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The Parenting Advice Website For The Working Christian Mom
How Anxiety Affects My Most Important Relationships
Anxiety disorder is a mental health disorder that results in feelings of stress, worry or fear that are so forceful that they interfere with day-to-day activities. This disorder affects around 30% of all adults residing in North America.
I have been treated for anxiety and I can be the first to tell you that nothing is more accurate than the statement I made above. I cannot go a day without anxiety crippling me in some way. And although God has helped me through all of my anxious moments, I feel as if my anxiety is my cross to bear.
My anxiety disorder causes me to be nervous, fearful, and constantly worried. Being a mom doesn’t make it any easier as I am always worrying that something will happen to my kid, or something will happen to me and my child will lose his mother.
As a Christian woman, I have faith and know that someday I will be reunited in heaven with my loved ones ( no matter how long we spend on this Earth) but that doesn’t make my anxiety go away or my fear of death diminish.
Some food for thought-you cannot offer the christian advice that anxiety can be prayed away. That’s not how it works.
Despite my faith, anxiety affects how I feel and behave. Thanks to my anxiety, I can sometimes be overly dependent on people for support and reassurance, such as friends, family and even my spouse.
My anxiety makes me prone to overthinking, I plan for all worst case scenarios (death, losing my job, The End Times, having a friend hate me, or my family disowning me, the list goes on and on…).
Anxiety can negatively impact many aspects of a person’s life including relationships. Friendships and marriages can be destroyed by anxiety (yes, it can be that severe).
In relationships, anxiety can lead to inappropriate suspicions (I’ve been called paranoid). Thanks to anxiety, I’m also indecisive and seek out constant communication. As we know relationships evoke deep emotional reactions, anxiety deepens these reactions.
Some people (such as myself) are especially affected by social anxiety, which has severely influenced how I develop all of my relationships.
My social anxiety causes me to fear of being judged negatively by others; especially in social situations (I also fear public embarrassment).
My social anxiety also can be overwhelming and debilitating (this can be extremely detrimental to relationships).
When I go out with my friends; most of the time I am paranoid the entire time that I will say something that will cause them to not speak to me anymore, or that they think I’m weird. I sometimes drink to kill this paranoia, which is not the right way to manage my feelings. As I always say “I’m working on that”.
My worst behavior that stems from my anxiety is my tendency to act out in ways that are destructive to my most important relationship (my husband). Basically whenever I feel a strain on an important relationship in my life, anxiety is most likely playing a role.
However, through building trust within my important relationships; I have reduced the power that anxiety has over me. I know that by understanding my own anxiety; I can positively impact my relationships with others.
Anxiety And It’s Affect On Marriage
Anxiety has a huge effect on marriages and other romantic relationships, even Christian relationships. Some people think that if you have faith in God your anxiety will just go away, but that isn’t the case.
When it comes anxiety and Christian relationships, many people see turning to God as a valuable tool for gaining strength against their anxiety disorder (and overcoming anxiety). Although it is more than likely that your anxiety just won’t magically go away (God is capable of anything, but he gives us trials for a reason), faith is a good way to learn how to cope.
Having a Christian relationship with God teaches about acceptance which starts by understanding anxiety and the possible ways to overcoming it. I know that my faith has helped me through my anxiety attacks; and that my husband’s effort to try and understand my disorder has been a great help to me.
Being Supportive Of One-Another
If you are experiencing anxiety, make sure to let those around you know about your disorder and that you cannot control some of the symptoms. In return for their understanding, make sure you support them through their trials; as each person has obstacles in life that they need to face.
Do you experience anxiety? You are more than welcome to share your story and/or coping methods. I would love to lend my ear.
-Holly, the imperfect momma.