Anxiety is Not an Accessory

Hi, my name’s Amanda, and I have anxiety…do you?
You, looking for a way to stand out, thinking this will make people care about you.
It won’t. Being a good person will.
But yeah, I see you. You’re romanticizing something that millions of people struggle with every day so let me just tell you:

Anxiety will not make you happy.
Anxiety will not make you cute or unique.
And it’s not a reason for people to find you interesting.
Anxiety does not mean you’re strong.
It doesn’t mean you’re beautifully fragile either.
Anxiety is not the reason I’m overweight, and it’s not the reason I’m shy.
…okay, it’s part of the reason I’m shy.
But it is not the key characteristic to your manic pixie dream girl that leaves her a puzzle for your teenage male protagonist to solve, but in case you’re still confused let me just tell you:

Anxiety is a mental illness.
Anxiety is not being able to go to school or work some days for no other reason than you can’t.
Anxiety is shutting down in public places and just knowing you need to get home.
Anxiety is feeling like things you’ve always done you suddenly can’t.
Anxiety is saying no again and again because some days you can’t even see your friends.
Anxiety is wondering if you’re always going to be like this, if you’re ever gonna get past it, if you’re ever going to do those things that you’ve always wanted to do, if you’re ever going to accomplish anything.
Anxiety is not being able to breathe or think straight and feeling so scared.
But then when you’re fine you get scared about getting scared at the wrong time and it just becomes a vicious cycle eating at your brain and sometimes you can’t help but feel like you’re drowning.

Can’t help but think that you’re broken.

Anxiety does not make me crazy but it’s not something for you to romanticize or to stigmatize and make people afraid to talk about it because damn it I’m going to talk about it and you, you’re going to listen.

You do not need to pretend to understand my anxiety, but just let me tell you one last time:

Anxiety is a mental illness.
Anxiety is a part of me, but it is not the part of me.
It will not break me, it will not make me, and it will not make you.


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