We need a while to calm down after arguments. Anxiety takes time to fade. That’s why we need you to be careful with your tone. We need you to show us respect, even when we’re annoyed with each other. The smallest things can set us off because we are sensitive souls. If you raise your voice at us, it could cause us to start shaking and panicking. And even if you apologize, that won’t erase the damage. It won’t stop our bodies from reacting to the anxiety we just experienced.
We need constant reassurance that you care. Our anxious minds can cause us to believe blatant lies. That’s why we need you to reassure us that you still love us, even if you only told us yesterday. It never hurts to repeat those three little words. Since we have anxiety, we can jump to the worst case scenarios if you start seeming distant. We’ll be much more comfortable if you’re open about your emotions, if you stop holding back how you’re feeling.
We need time to adjust to new circumstances. Even if we love you with all our hearts, it’s going to be stressful to take the next step – whether that means making the relationship official, moving in together, or getting married. Our anxiety is bound to plague us with everything that could possibly go wrong, so we need you to realize that our hesitation has nothing to do with our feelings for you. It’s simply the way our minds work.
We need constant love and support. The last thing we need is someone getting annoyed with us over anxiety that we’re unable to control. We are going to shut down completely if you start acting like we’re bothering you, like things would be easier without us around. Even though you might not understand our anxiety, we want you to be there to comfort us and remind us that everything is going to be okay. We want you to be patient with us and give us space and time when we need it.
We need to set plans and stick to them. Uncertainty bothers us, so we want to have as much information as possible as soon as possible. If we’re going out with your friends, we might want to know what type of clothing we should wear and when we should leave and who else is going to be there. We need partners who are good at communicating with us, because surprise changes in plans could completely ruin our moods. We need to mentally prepare for the day ahead of us.
We need you to accept us instead of trying to change us. Anxiety is always going to be a part of us. It’s never going to go away completely, so we need you to accept it. We don’t want you to try to solve our problems for us. We don’t want you to pity us or baby us and act like we’re incapable of taking care of ourselves either. We want your respect. We want you to treat us gently, but we don’t want you to lie to spare our feelings. We can handle the truth. We can handle anything.