It can seem almost impossible to explain anxiety to someone who has never experienced it. That must be why people say things like, “you should just calm down” when you’re having an attack of anxiety—because they just simply do not understand how scary and out of control it can feel.
A woman named Chrissy Stockton started a Facebook group for women who struggle with anxiety. She asked the members of the group to explain what their anxiety feels like, and here are 20 of the answers. You might find something that you relate to, or some way of explaining anxiety that you think might be helpful in your communications about it with friends and family.
“I read before the best way to explain anxiety to someone is imagine you have porn up on your browser and someone comes up behind you, and you cannot hit that “x” button fast enough.”
“When I’m anxious I can’t think of anything else but that one thing everything is on auto pilot. Taking a bath eating texting or even reading a book feels like a chore. Simply getting out of bed when you want nothing more than to stay in it is a challenge.”
“When I am anxious I am completely fixated on the one thing. I can’t think rationally or logically, I only feel overwhelmed with emotion. It feels like everything is wrong and that it will always be that way. I can’t see past the cause of my anxiety or see that it will be fine. Anxiety makes it feel like the world is ending when it isn’t.”