To the Person I'm Dating: Let Me Introduce You to My Depression and Anxiety


Hi there,

If you’re reading this, it means I like you. We’ve probably been on a few dates during which I questioned you about your hopes and dreams and your views on cats. You patiently listened to my awkward ramblings and may have even found it adorable. I enjoy spending time with you and would like to continue getting to know you, so I think it’s necessary to disclose I come as a package deal. Anxiety and Depression like to tag along from time to time.

Anxiety likes to stop me mid-story to proclaim I’m being weird and no one really cares about the books I find inspiring or that time I jumped out of a plane. She’ll point out that I’m not interesting on my own and tells me I should order another cocktail, even if I think I’ve had enough. Sometimes Anxiety waits for me to get home then grills me about our date. She likes to hear the play-by-play, making me explain the details. All the while she becomes certain I messed everything up and describes what I should have done instead. Anxiety insists on seeing all of your text messages and makes me rewrite my responses so as not to scare you away by seeming overly eager. She positively can’t understand why you wanted to see me again.

Depression is a bit quieter. He doesn’t particularly like following me around and instead begs me to blow off our plans. Depression doesn’t see the point. He thinks I’m just going to let you down eventually so why lead you on? He can be pretty convincing. His favorite tactic — bringing up all of my failed relationships to prove that I’m really no good at this. Sometimes he will drag himself out of the house but he’s never on time. He’ll show up late, usually while the party is in full swing and just linger in the corner letting his presence dampen the mood. No matter what you suggest, Depression won’t want to do it. He likes to whisper in my ear, telling me you haven’t contacted me today because you think I’m boring.

Sometimes Anxiety and Depression work together. While Depression insists you aren’t interested in me Anxiety rattles of all the worst-case-scenarios. No matter how many possibilities Anxiety makes me consider, Depression always chimes in with the same response, “Why even bother?” Anxiety will wake me up with a bucket of ice water, screaming I’m wasting my life away while Depression sits on my chest, refusing to let me up.

I’m telling you this because even though they are a part of my life they don’t define who I am. I’ve gotten better at standing up for myself and they know they aren’t welcome. But they are persistent. I know, deep down that I’m the same, fun-loving girl who showed up on our first date but occasionally they do get under my skin. I won’t let them scare you away, I’ve gotten pretty good at showing them who’s boss. But still, they do like to show up now and then.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Thinkstock photo via TeerawatWinyarat

JOIN THE CONVERSATION

Related to Anxiety

woman Silhouette

When a Coworker Helped Me Get Through Another Day of Anxiety

It was one of those days. A day where my anxiety reigned and shrouded me with its dark veil. This thing called anxiety and panic had barreled into my life over the past year and I was still waiting for rescue. I barely made it through each day as a wife, mom of two, and [...]
White chair standing on a green glade, prepared for the wedding ceremony. The chair is decorated with a bouquet of flowers. The background is blurred.

Anxiety Won't Keep Me From Going to My Stepdaughter's Wedding

My stepdaughter’s wedding is in two days. I have anxiety and it is at an all time high. The wedding is a large event including many people. I am intimidated by dealing with large groups of people. Usually, I find an excuse and opt out of most events, even family gatherings. But this is for [...]
A woman sleeping. Her clock says 5 am

How a 5 A.M. Panic Attack Helped Me Understand My Anxiety

Back in August, I woke up with a panic attack. Actually, it’s probably more accurate to say the quantity of my worrisome thoughts was so great that my brain forced me into consciousness. This one was a real doozy. I swore I could feel the neurons morphing into thought after anxious thought before rapid-firing around [...]
woman sitting by a lake in the sunlight

Why My Anxiety Means I Can't Shut My Emotions Out

I feel. I feel everything. I immerse myself in things that bring me happiness, yet if one thing goes wrong, that feeling is knocked down and overtaken. I become corrupted by panic, worry and failure. Overthinking everything that happens, trying to rationalize the compulsive thoughts draining my remaining energy, I am lost. Lost on a [...]