Most times my life is complicated enough on its own. Relationships are notorious for being hard work as well. So when you find yourself in love with someone with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), things can be even more challenging. But like most challenges, the rewards are worth it!!
Anxiety is tough! Not just for the people that have it, but for the people who go through it with that person. It’s emotionally taxing on both ends. I constantly worry about him and it breaks my heart to watch him struggle
Just like I am not defined by my asthma, he is not defined by his anxiety. I do my best to accommodate his anxiety. It’s not much different than putting your cat in the bedroom when someone is allergic. If I can do something small to prevent him from feeling anxious than I am going to do it.
Here is ways you can help
Never ask what they want to eat
For people with anxiety, choices can be a trigger. I used to get confused when he would get angry when I would what he wanted for dinner. Just the simple question of “chicken or fish” would give him anxiety, let alone choosing a whole meal.So since I do all of the cooking, I also do all of the deciding when it comes to meals. He graciously eats anything I put in front of him because I took the worry out of deciding what to eat.
I do like to check inn from time to time to see if he would like anything in particular when I get groceries next. I never ask when he’s hungry or during meals though. Maybe when we are out for a drive or during commercials at night.
Never Interrupt them
I have learned never to interrupt him. When people with anxiety are hyper focused on something, you should let them finish before you speak. Having a train of thought ruined is no big deal for most people, but it can also ruin your afternoon if you struggle with anxiety.
Don’t sweat the small stuff
I’m not the kind of girl who sweats the small stuff, so this is easy for me. I think its takes more energy to get mad about wet towels on the floor than it is to bend over and pick up the towel in the first place. Afterall, you are the one upset about the towel…not him. Don’t pick fights over mundane things.
This is an add on of the above.If something small does happen, the sooner things get back to normal the easier it will be for the anxious person to relax. For example, if he isn’t on time, it will make him anxious. This will cause him to get anxious, and the result can sometimes be road rage. Once we get to the restaurant, I pretend like it never happened. Instead of getting upset, I can carry on with the night and we’re able to have a good time.
Be Mindful of triggers
The effects of anxiety are real. It’s not just racing thoughts, but very powerful physical symptoms as well. Increased heart rate, tighten chest, full body sweating. So once you recognize their triggers, be mindful of them.