The Mighty Logo

The most helpful emails in health
Browse our free newsletters

Members of The Mighty’s mental health community share seemingly “harmless” comments people said about anxiety.


“Harmless” Comments That Actually Hurt People With Anxiety

Everybody feels stressed sometimes.

“If I disclose how I’m feeling to you, the last thing I want is you trying to shift the focus to ‘everyone’ else.”

Other people have it worse than you do.

“Just because I can function a bit more than others with anxiety doesn’t mean I’m not struggling.”

Stop freaking out, it’s not a big deal.

“Anxiety doesn’t care if it’s actually a big deal or not.”

Have you been praying enough?

“I was often told I didn’t have enough, faith, implying my anxiety was my fault and a punishment.”


“Yes, it’s happening ‘again.’ I can experience breaks, but it never goes away.”

You don’t seem like someone who would have anxiety.

“Because I’m not walking around breathing into a paper bag 24/7? Makes me feel completely valid.”

Just calm down.

“We don’t wake up wanting to stress and worry and exhaust ourselves with everything around and inside of us.”

Get over yourself.

“When I hear this I shut down. I remove myself from people. I disappear altogether.”

Just breathe.

“There is an elephant on my chest and fire in my veins, so in this moment, I can’t breathe.”

When someone with anxiety opens up about their struggles, oftentimes they aren’t looking for your “solution” or “advice.”

What may seem “harmless” to one person may actually be hurtful to another. No matter what anyone says, your feelings are valid, and you deserve support.

Originally published: April 17, 2018
Want more of The Mighty?
You can find even more stories on our Home page. There, you’ll also find thoughts and questions by our community.
Take Me Home