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How To Help Your Girlfriend With Anxiety

Do: Go To Therapy Yourself

When Your Girlfriend Has Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar

Whether your loved one resists or accepts the idea of therapy, you should also take care of yourself as well and seek counseling. A counselor can help you better understand your partners behavior, how to cope with it and how to support your partner.

At the same time, your counselor can help you understand your feelings and how you can take care of yourself. As much as youre trying to take care of your loved one, prioritize self-care as well.

Sometimes You Will Be The Trigger Do Not Take This Personally

No, our anxiety will not magically skip over you just because we are dating you. If anything, being in a relationship adds to the anxiety. There are constant questions about how to reply to your text message asking what we are doing, what happens if we upset you, what does our future look like, and so on. But do not blame yourself in these situations. Do not feel guilty about any anxiety or panic attacks that stem from you. Anxiety is something we have to live with and deal with, in all aspects of our life.

Anxiety Can Actually Deepen Your Relationship

Anxiety isnt only a source of stress in a relationship. Its also an opportunity to understand and love your partner more deeply. The beliefs behind their anxiety is a part of who they are.

By learning about anxiety or seeking help from a mental health professional, you can support your partner and look out for your own mental health. Then your relationship can become stronger and more full of joy.

Talkspace articles are written by experienced mental health-wellness contributors they are grounded in scientific research and evidence-based practices. Articles are extensively reviewed by our team of clinical experts to ensure content is accurate and on par with current industry standards.

Our goal at Talkspace is to provide the most up-to-date, valuable, and objective information on mental health-related topics in order to help readers make informed decisions.

Articles contain trusted third-party sources that are either directly linked to in the text or listed at the bottom to take readers directly to the source.

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Do: Manage Your Reactions To The Anxiety Or A Panic Attack

When youre dating someone with anxiety, during their breaking point, you may think that its a personal attack on you or its an act of rejection or selfishness towards you. But its not. Its not an attempt to create a distance to break your relationship.

Make sure youre aware of how to manage your reactions in front of your partner. It will be helpful to avoid shouting and avoid what triggers your partners anxious state. It helps if you could sit down and talk about supporting them the next time they get panic attacks. You need to be on the same page to make this relationship work.

Focus On The Other Important Relationships In Your Life

How to Help Adopted Kids Deal With Separation Anxiety ...

If youre wondering how to deal with separation anxiety from your spouse, boyfriend, girlfriend, etc., one of the best cures is to spend time with other loved ones. Dont forget about those other important relationships in your life: your siblings, parents, friends, or even your children.

You might feel sad to be separated from your partner for a period, but there are dozens of other people who would love to spend some of that time with you.

Make a plan to have lunch with an old friend. Call your mom. Take your children out for a super fun outing.

These things will warm your heart and remind you that you are oh so loved.

Recommended Reading: What Does An Anxiety Attack Feel Like Physically

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy For Teen Girls With Anxiety

If supportive conversations and coping skills dont seem to be enough, counseling can help teens girls overcome anxiety. You dont need to be in a full-in crisis situation in order to benefit from therapy. Normal life transitions like starting at a new school, managing homework stress, or dealing with friend drama are common and valid reasons to seek out a counselor. Sometimes, its just nice to have an unbiased person to work through all this stuff with who isnt a friend or a parent.

In particular, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can be a great option for teen girls with anxiety. It goes beyond just talking about worriesteens walk out the door with tools they can use right away to start coping with life stress. Its really empowering to get a handle on strong feelings like anxiety. Teens can take the newly learned self-confidence and coping skills they learn in CBT with them into young adulthood.

If youre in North Carolina, New York, or Florida and looking for a CBT therapist for your teen girl, Id love to help! Im local to the Davidson, North Carolina area, but I can see teens from all three of these states online. You can learn more about me and my approach, or shoot me an email if youd like to set up a first appointment.

Include Your Partner In Self

Do you have any rituals or hobbies you use to take care of your mental health? Maybe you meditate, run or listen to relaxing music. If so, try to include your partner.

Ive done breathing exercises with boyfriends and its very intimate, said life coach Nina Rubin. Weve sat across from each other and breathed at the same slow rate.

Including your partner in rituals like this can help both of you reduce anxiety in the relationship.

Read Also: Why Does Anxiety Make It Hard To Breathe

Relationship Anxiety Types And Tips

So many things can cause anxiety in relationships, and often that anxiety differs depending on what brought it on. Abusive relationships cause anxiety for reasons that are completely different than those that develop anxiety because of problems raising children. Some people have anxiety first that leaks into their relationship in other ways.

It is such an immense topic that entire books have been written about how and why some people develop relationship anxiety and the challenges that they go through. When we talk about relationship anxiety, we may be talking about any of the following:

Managing Anxiety Takes Time And Practice Patience Is Greatly Appreciated

How I Help My Girlfriend With Her Anxiety

While I cannot speak for everyone, I regularly attend therapy where I talk about my most recent anxious moments and learn about cognitive behavioral therapy, a set of techniques used to manage negative thought processes, the very foundation of anxiety itself. Therapy is difficult and challenging, because you have to repeatedly wrestle with your anxiety to learn how to win. We get a lot of homework from our counselors as well. It is hard to cope with failure because perfectionism is in our blood. Be supportive of your partner both when they progress and regress. All battles are easier when you can face them with a partner.

Read Also: What Are The Signs Of An Anxiety Attack

Help Them To Help Themselves

Anxiety is very treatable, both with medication and talking therapies. Having someone along on the journey to help makes it easier. Your partner might find it difficult to go and see the GP or a therapist about how they are feeling, so it can be a help to offer to go along with them. It may be helpful to practice things like relaxation and mindfulness with them to help them normalise the experience, especially in the early practices. Ultimately the decision to seek help will be your partners, and some people choose to deal with their anxiety themselves. Whatever they decide, be supportive of your partners decision.

Ask Questions And Do Your Best To Understand What Theyre Going Through

Anxiety can be different for everyone. Some people will experience uncomfortable reactions in the body like a churning stomach or an out of control heart rate. Others will have a racing mind.

While you can read information online on what its like to live with anxiety, youre not going to get the full picture of what its really like for your partner.

Its a deeply subjective and personal experience.

So if youre going to understand what its like for them, you need to talk to them about it.

Its better to have this discussion when youre alone and in a comfortable space. After all, your partner needs to be comfortable to talk about something that troubles them.

Here are 3 good questions you can ask:

1) Is there anything you want me to know about your anxiety?

2) Is there anything I can do that will help when youre experiencing anxiety?

3) Is there anything that you dont want me to do?

As someone who has dealt with anxiety my whole life, I can tell you that its not easy to talk about anxiety.

So be patient and take your time while talking about this difficult topic with your partner.

Remember, you dont have to learn everything there is to know about your partners anxiety in one conversation. It will take time.

Furthermore, if youve only just started dating, its obviously going to take time to develop the trust and understanding necessary to be totally honest with each other about these kinds of things.

Recommended Reading: Is There Anxiety Medicine For Cats

Bacteria On The Brain

Neuropsychology includes strong speculations that schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and other neurological or psychological problems may also be linked with changes in the microbiome. Researchers believe that disturbance in bacteria in the microbiome could cause the immune system to overreact and contribute to GI tract inflammation, leading to the development of disease symptoms found not only in your whole body but also in your brain. This connection between the brain and gastrointestinal tract is called the gut-brain axis. Some researchers think that early life infections may adversely affect the mucosal membrane in the GI tract, disrupt the axis of the gut and brain, and interfere with normal brain development. Mucous membranes can also be replaced by other methods, such as poor diet, antibiotic use, radiation treatment, and chemotherapy.

Encourage And Join In On A Healthy Anti

How to Really Help Someone with Social Anxiety

Healthy lifestyle choices are anti-anxiety because they promote good physical and mental health. Help your spouse adopt healthier day-to-day practices and encourage them by leading with your own example. Some ways to be healthier and better able to tackle and conquer anxiety include:

  • Getting enough quality sleep every night
  • Eating a healthy, nutritious diet and limiting junk foods
  • Exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy weight
  • Avoiding alcohol and drugs

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How To Stop Relationship Anxiety

Relationships are incredibly complicated. There are two things that you have to ask yourself in the beginning, long before you can expect to fix your relationship:

  • Is the relationship worth saving?
  • Are you willing to change yourself even without your partner changing?

The second question, however, is based on one simple truth about relationships: you can only change yourself. Despite all the ways you plead with your partner to improve, you can’t be the one to change them. Only they can change them. Your role, then, is to try to be the best partner you can be and as open as possible, and then hope that it motivates them to change as well.

Should You Touch Someone Having A Panic Attack

Avoid physical contact and assuming it can help them calm down.

Try to be patient and supportive helping your friend to slow down their breathing and ask for their permission to touch their shoulder or back.

If they say you are allowed to touch their hand or back, it can really accelerate their calming process.

Read Also: How To Help A Spouse With Anxiety

How Do We Treat Relationship Anxiety

Couples Therapy is an effective treatment for Relationship Anxiety. Where both partners agree to seek therapy together, it can be an intimate space where relationship fears can be explored, new patterns of relating to one another can be found, and a deeper understanding of early life experiences and how these shape our adult relationships can help couples reignite their compassion and empathy, as well as their sex life.

For couples where both parties are not agreeable to therapy, individualised treatment approaches are available that can target your anxiety in a way that will have a positive impact on your current and future romantic relationship. This might include CBT, ACT, DBT, IPT, or Psychodynamic Therapy. Either way, there are treatment options that can lead to positive and lasting change in your relationships.

Dos: Six Helpful Ways To Support Your Girlfriend

Help Your Wife Deal With Stress (4 Simple Ways)
  • Encourage her to seek, and stick with, therapy: This may entail helping her research and find the best counseling in your area. She may want someone to go to therapy with her and offer a supportive presence, or she may need a nudge to continue going to therapy even when she doesnt feel like it.
  • Do your research: The more you know, the more you can help. Take the time to read about depression, understand its symptoms and consider what the experience is like for your girlfriend. Youll learn helpful strategies and gain valuable insight into the struggle shes facing.
  • Find practical ways to help: People battling depression often find they lack the energy or motivation to perform activities even necessary everyday to-dos. Whether its giving a hand with groceries, cooking a meal or giving a quick spruce-up to the home, look for specific, tangible ways to step in and help.
  • Be patient: Depression often takes time to heal or may linger long-term. An exciting activity or helpful counseling appointment wont end her depression overnight it takes time. Extend patience and let her know that youre here to support her journey without pressure for immediate improvement.
  • Take care of yourself: In your well-meaning efforts to care for your girlfriend, dont neglect your own self-care. Take a step back and recharge your own batteries when you need to. Make sure you have outlets to safely express your own emotions and experiences. Pursue your own hobbies, friendships and health.
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    Quick Tips For Helping Your Boyfriend With Anxiety

    Here are a few ideas that may help

    • Enlist the help of someone he respects and admires a brother, uncle, father, friend, pastor, ex-coworker, etc. Ask that man to invite your boyfriend for coffee.
    • Get a volunteer job, and invite your boyfriend to join you .
    • Take a class together yoga, ballroom dance, kayaking.
    • Get a life and enjoy it! Dont dwell in his misery, anxiety, and panic. Detach from his depression, and free yourself. He may find the motivation he needs in your happiness and fulfillment.

    What will motivate your boyfriend to get help with anxiety and panic attacks depends on his personality, lifestyle, perspective, and journey. There are no pat answers that help everyone. For instance, one guy might find that dog walking is exactly what he needs, while another might need a week-long camping trip with his buddies.

    The trick is encouraging him to try different things until he finds what works. One of my favorite books ever is Kitchen Table Wisdom Stories That Heal. It contains stories about being knocked down by physical and emotional health problems, and offers amazing advice for healing and becoming stronger and healthier because of the illness.

    If you have any tips or thoughts on helping a boyfriend or loved one overcome anxiety and panic attacks, please comment below.

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