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“Hi, my name is Ariel. I am 26 years old, and I live in Chicago. Anxiety is easy sometimes. Other times, your partner is standing fully clothed in the shower, holding you up to keep you from sinking to the floor, while you try to breathe through your second panic attack of the day. Panic attacks can be debilitating and exhausting for the individual experiencing it, and terrifying for the observer if they have no clue how to handle the situation.

Before I learned how to better manage my anxiety, isolation was my “easy out”, because I felt like a freak of nature during my bad moments, and I was already quite good at compartmentalization due to past trauma. It may still feel easier to hide from social relationships, but because of the love and support I have in my life, I feel safe when I am at my most vulnerable. I hope anyone experiencing the same is able to lean on someone for support.

You are not your condition, and you are not alone.”

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“Hi my name is Josh from just north of Boston. I’ve always suffered with anxiety and depression, but didn’t get diagnosed until I got health insurance a few years ago. I’m currently in therapy and working on it. I am 38, own a successful tattoo shop, have a wonderful boy and 2 dogs that I love very much. On the outside, one would think that I have it made. I have a family and make a lot of money. But depression doesn’t care about those things. Some days it’s hard for me to go to work, or even care for my family. Luckily I have friends and family that understand how hard it is. This took a lot for me to say, but I need to start accepting my illness and understand that it’s not me that’s the problem. I have everything Ive ever wanted in life, but still suffer the symptoms of anxiety and depression. So for those others out there that suffer, I 100% understand. If you are hurting, it’s OK to ask for help. Something I’m learning now. Best wishes to you all.❤️”

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