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It is an odd feeling to be in love and feel like the luckiest man on Earth, only for it to be closely watched by the hungry eyes of your own anxiety. It is there constantly, poking and prodding at your brain and wanting you to think that every move your partner makes indicates your world is going to fall spectacularly apart.
I have been with my boyfriend for three years now, disregarding the two month break we had last year due to said anxiety. At the time I thought he hated me, that I was suffocating him and that I had become this gross, overly tearful monster. Truth be told, he still doesn't know to this day that those were the reasons why I ended it for that brief moment. In all its glory I embraced the "we need space as I think we want different things" cliché.
When we got back together it was the best thing that had ever happened. A few months after we decided to take the next step and move in together. Throughout the whole process I was a wreck: what if we failed our credit check? What if I lose my job and can't afford it? What if he changes his mind and he hates the idea of living with me? It was that last question in particular that circled around my head like a vulture, waiting to pick at my mind like it was decaying and weak.
I became obsessive, trying too hard to please him or getting upset when he didn't want to kiss me (side note I had food in my teeth and I didn't give him a chance to tell me because I got so upset so quickly). I became so frantically worried about our relationship I began to shut myself down. I had this irrational theory in my head that if I stepped away from my boyfriend the worry and frustration would melt away.
Oh how I was wrong. We argued more, and despite being fully aware that this was my fault I put my guard up and blamed him. When I was having an episode he would try to comfort me and I would push him away. I had convinced myself amidst all of the distancing that he was only doing it to shut me up, not because he cared. Admittedly, even writing this out I realise how much of a pain in the ass I must've been.
I guess the point of writing this out is to show that anxiety can be so blinding, it can be toxic. Luckily we are still together and we are truly happy. I still have my moments, but I have grown to accept that I cannot take my boyfriend for granted. He is clearly here to stay and rather than abuse that I should appreciate it everyday and use it as a platform to help overcome it all. So here is some advice I'd like to give to anybody in a relationship and struggles with anxiety:
Although it is so difficult to shake yourself from that moment of despair, just know that someone is there to welcome you with open arms when you finally manage to escape it. It could last for an hour, it could last for a week, but no matter how long it lasts they'll be there.
Also, when it feels like all seven billion people on this earth are on your shoulders, just remember that your partner isn't going to be the one to climb on too and break your back, they are going to stand there and help remove each of those people until it is just you and them and tranquility.
Most importantly just be good to yourself and let others be good to you too. There is no shame in that.