When you’re stuck in an anxious moment, with racing thoughts and feelings of panic ricocheting throughout your body, reading an “inspiring” cliché may not be quite what you need to move past it. But inspiring words coming from a friend or family member who knows you — those can be different. Although it isn’t a “quick fix,” a perfectly timed text can at least remind you you’re not alone in your feelings and that you indeed are loved.
To celebrate friends who know what to say (or at least try their best), we asked people in our mental health community to share a text or message they received from a loved one who helped them during an anxious moment.
Here’s what they shared with us:
1. “I don’t know what to do right now to help you, and that’s OK. All I can do is be here for you and I can accept that. I know I can’t make everything go away, but I can hold you while it feels like the world is shattering around us. Your struggle is my struggle, and your fight is mine.” — submitted by Brooklynn G.
2. “Hey, you’re a beautiful, young mother. And I know shit’s always hard… Please, please, please keep being the beautiful mother that you are because even if you’re not in direct contact with the people who support you, you are an inspiration.” — submitted by Rachel M.
3. “After being diagnosed with depression/bipolar disorder/anxiety over 10 years ago, I never imagined I would find someone who could put up with me or better yet fall in love with me. I receive texts like this all the time from my fiancé, but this is the only one I could find right now. Sometimes all someone needs is a little motivation and support, to just to know their effort is not going unnoticed. He’s been my backbone, and I’m so thankful to have someone like him in my life, forever…
4. A tip for anyone with a significant other who’s battling mental illness — if there’s nothing else you can do, just be there to lean on. Mental illnesses are no joke and receiving a simple text with a little bit of encouragement could be enough to turn your partner’s mood around (even if it’s just for a bit).” — submitted by Kristy M.
5. “Progress, not perfection. Telling me and your therapist are both really hard steps to take, give yourself some credit for that. You haven’t truly lost because you’re still here and you’re still fighting. I’m proud of you for that and thankful too because having you in my life has made it better, and I know how hard the fight is, but you keep doing it.” — submitted by Theresa S.
6. “Keep writing to me. You are never a bother to me. Stay in the present, you will get through this. You may not believe it, but I do. I have faith in you.” — submitted by Ariana M.
7. “My fiancé sends pictures of our dogs when I tell him I’m not doing well.” — submitted by Erin W.
8. “My sister: ‘It’s OK to feel this way. I am here for you.'” — submitted by Erica F.
9. “You are not your thoughts: you are the person who you always were… and that will come back.” — submitted by Heleen K.
10. “I’m sorry… do you want to offload on me? I’m here for you whatever and whenever you need. Huge hugs xxx” — submitted by Emma L.
11. “I don’t know how to fix this, but I love you.” — submitted Steph B.
12. Submitted by Sarah P.:
13. “This one is kinda silly but from my boyfriend, ‘Think of pink giraffes.'” — Isabel M.
14. “My friend sent me, ‘I don’t know what you’re going through, but I’m here for you if you need me.’ That meant everything to me.” — submitted by Matt N.
15. “My co-worker, ‘Take a deep breath. You got this!’ It was so nice to feel empowered in a moment of weakness.” — submitted by Ashley M.
16. Submitted by Katie L.:
17. “My mom randomly texted me one day while I was having a particularly bad day, and all the message said was, ‘Breathe. Love you,’ and it helped me make it to the next day.” — submitted by Rayne S.
18. “‘I love you.’ Part of my anxiety is worrying that friends and family don’t love me enough and will leave me of their own will.” — submitted by Megan E.
19. Submitted by Grace D.:
21. “My best friend texted me, ‘Maybe you need some rest.’ I changed my ‘plans’ for that moment and laid on my couch and took maybe an hour nap and woke up feeling much better… it was so helpful in that moment because I don’t think I would’ve done that.” — submitted by Lisa L.
22. “I remembered that you have to go through the bridge to get to my apartment. Remember: you will get through the bridge come hell or high water, and plus, you can’t have beer or my company until you get through it, so be brave. You got this, and if you don’t have it I’ll come get you.” — submitted by Brittney L.
23. Submitted by Brandi W.:
24. “A close friend of mine assures me my brain isn’t ‘stupid,’ it is just trying to help and is misguided. And then sends me a bunch of pics of whatever her cats are doing at the moment. I do the same for her.” — Chriss T.
25. Submitted by Sammi G.:
26. “I’m not going anywhere. I’m here.” — submitted Lynsey G.
27. “We’ve got this.” — submitted by Michelle B.