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When Anxiety Makes You Hurt People to Push Them Away

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Some days, my anxiety is really bad to the point I have an emotional breakdown. Some days, I’ll be sitting in my room or my car, and I’ll be bawling my eyes out, feeling like there’s just no hope anymore, that nobody cares and like I’m so alone. My friends try to talk to me and tell me they care. My anxiety manifests itself as a voice in my head, always there, always shooting me down, its mission to make sure I’m never happy. The voice starts convincing me I’m better off alone, that once people see how “messed up” I am, they’ll leave.

“You have to do or say anything to get this person to leave.”

So some of the responses to my friends’ texts turn into anger.

“You don’t have to pretend to want to text me; you probably have plenty of other, better people you could text.”

“Sorry I’m such a downer. It’s OK if you don’t want to text anymore. I don’t even know why you’re texting me; you don’t even care anyways. “

“I don’t need anyone. I’m better off alone anyway. You should just give up on me.”

With some people, it actually works; they get kind of hurt by some of the things I say, so they leave me alone. And then I feel even sadder than I did before. Other people actually stay, despite all of the things I’ve said, because they know what I’m trying to do. Yes, they are still hurt by me making all these assumptions about them, but they still stay.

So yes, in the moment, all I want is to be alone and I listen to the voice in my head. I push people away when the truth is… I don’t want them to leave. So that’s why I always hope I fail to push people away. Pushing people away is a habit I don’t know if I’ll be able to stop doing. I hope that, maybe one day, I won’t feel like I have to push people away, and I also hope that, for right now, people won’t actually leave when I try.

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Photo by Tina Markova on Unsplash

Originally published: June 15, 2018
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