Separation Anxiety

Join the Conversation on
Separation Anxiety
2.7K people
0 stories
288 posts
  • About Separation Anxiety
  • Explore Our Newsletters
  • What's New in Separation Anxiety

    Relationship Anxiety

    I am diagnosed with GAD amongst other things. I’m in my first healthy relationship (we are long distance) and for some reason I’m having a lot of anxiety. When we are together all my worries fade away but when we are apart I question our compatibility, my feelings, our love. He is also one of my only friends so I am having some separation anxiety because we are apart. Rationally I know this is a healthy relationship and I love him but I can’t stop attaching myself to the feelings of anxiety. I’ve tried to search up how to deal with this relationship/separation anxiety but I haven’t found much. Does anyone else struggle with this, if so what did you do?


    Separation Anxiety

    I am dealing with separation anxiety with my kiddo. He is attached to my hip. I have to leave for work extra early and sit in the parking lot and wait because of I don't leave before he wakes up, it is traumatic. I have to stay with him until he falls asleep and then sneak out of his room. That wouldn't be a big deal if we didn't have sleep issues, because I end up awake with him most of the night. Any tips on how to handle separation anxiety? This is one exhausted mama right here. The hubby tries to help, but my kiddo just won't take it. It has to be mama. Feeling frustrated and tired

    1 comment


    today I was full blown panic, separation anxiety and having a borderline moment. on my way to my grandma's house, my grandma missed her turn to follow me back to her house and i waited she never came back to find me, so I kept going, my mind kept screaming at me " my dog, "my dog" on repeat to the point I've become obessed and no one not even me can get me off of repeat. Anger raged, extreme sadness flooded me. all I could think of is I can never be separate my dog ever again and she's dead. half way their calm came over me until my grandma's truck wasn't their, panic, crying and screaming while walking back and forth on the street. I couldn't calm myself and in that moment, I wished I had my new medicine to calm my system because it kept screaming at me. I wanted to call my honorary mom like I use to because my mind kept telling me and I kept repeating over and over again out loud " I'm scared " I'm scared. I'm scared but also I felt extremely alone. I wanted to call my therapist like I use too. I wanted to call my mom, but it would of resulted in more pain, more aloneness. The book I'm reading talks about how trauma rewires our brains, I can see how it's true. my brain always reacts to percieved abandoment and now I can easily get triggered and I use to get rarely triggered. while I was watching a movie, I got triggered by a dog dying, I needed to walk outside in the dark until I could calm down. trauma and depression changed me so much. i use to watch movies or shows that have emotion to them because i liked sad movies, you've learned so much from them but now i can't watch much with emotion in it. I watch mindless shows. I was able to kayak for the first time by myself but I think its because I cried out every emotion of my dog and the event today that I actually enjoyed it. my book says trauma breeds more trauma I believe that the evidence is in my life. so many people walked away from me or ghosted me. I don't blame them the borderline personality monster within eventually over takes who I am underneath, my mind is fractured and broken. They've called me manipulative, all the while I was loving them deeply but the monster within me comes out and the real me is silenced, you can't hear her, her screams for help, you can't see her try to push the monster down and let her real self out. she's buried underneath the trauma, the monster. someone once told me love is never enough, that's my strongest point. but the monster shadow's it, blocks the light out, doesn't let all the good parts of me shine. so I hide within the shadow begging and crying to get back everything I love so deeply, but thanks to the monster the victims remain beautiful. one thing I know for certain everything I've ever overcome, pain always remians, I can have genuine happiness and wonderful thing's happening to me but the pain is always their under the surface following me through life. it's like the pain is my closest friend, it's always their for me, it tucks me in to bed, it follows me through the streets. it tells me how much it loves me, when I forget that it is even there. I find losing relationships to be the most traumatic experience, over death. I choose to be thankful for life, because I can love more people with my whole heart, selfless to the best of mine ability even if more walk away. #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #mentaillness #Depression



    “I am done with this world and everyone in it.” plays on repeat in my head 24-7. I’ve been fiercely struggling with depression, hyper emotion, irritability and anger for months now and I just got rejected by someone I thought was a friend. I have an appointment with my psychiatrist today, the lamictal isn’t working at all and I think I need to be put into an outpatient psych program. Between Dr. K and Dr. Z, I don’t feel they are doing enough. I might benefit from being hospitalized but I don’t want to tell Dr. K because I have a dog that is very attached to me and gets separation anxiety when I leave him. #Depression , ADHD, PMDD, ASD, Trauma

    See full photo


    Things have been going back and forth for me a lot lately. They seem to go really well and then crash. Like, not that long ago I posted about how things are starting to look up to me, but now I'm debatably worse (mentally) than I've been since my 7th grade year, and I'm about to start my senior year of high school.
    Good Things:
    1. I'm finally with the guy I've been crushing on for 5 years and been in love with for about years
    2. Mom is starting to let me out of the house and letting me begin to start to do things
    3. I'm being allowed to see my friends and be more social
    4. My childhood sexual abuser is going to be going to be going to prison for longer
    5. My confidence is getting better

    Bad Things:
    1. My depression is getting worse
    2. I'm anxious 24/7
    3. My mom and her boyfriend are against the medication that will help me with my #Bipolar and my #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder , along with my depression
    4. My doctor isn't taking appointments right now so I can't get my meds for my anxiety
    5. My separation anxiety with my boyfriend seems to be getting really bad
    6. Although things are getting better with socializing, my mom still won't let me go anywhere if she's not gonna be able to be right there, not even to a family members house
    7. I'm having "internal seizures" where I disassociate from my body from anywhere between 30 seconds to 2 hours and everything goes black for me. My real thoughts come out too, I suppose. I find papers with notes that I've written on there about not wanting to live anymore, or new self harm marks on my body. But no recollection of ever doing them, not even of what I used to harm myself with.
    8. I'm having night terrors 6/7 nights a week, the other night I don't end up sleeping at all
    9. My #EatingDisorder is getting bad again. I'm relapsing with my binging and starving cycles.
    10. My psychiatrist quit his job

    I could keep going, but I would just feel like I'm complaining. Essentially, I just feel like I'm done with everything. I have 475 days until I'm 18. I have 475 until I get my own life. People always tell me "Enjoy your youth" "Be a kid while you can" and all this bullshit like that, but I don't want to be treated like a kid, and there is no youth to enjoy. I had to grow up, be an adult at age 8, I raised myself for years, it wasn't until my freshman year if high school that I was being raised by another person, and the only reason I can see as to why is because that's when I had my almost successful attempt. Within the past 2 weeks I've done 76 new SH cuts, making up 3 words
    1. "Nothing"
    2. "Useless
    3. " Hopeless"
    And I don't regret doing them, as its how I feel... But I'm also relapsing with that. I'd been clean for over a year, but I've relapsed, and its bad....
    I told my mom, but she just looked at me sadly and said something along the lines of, "Okay, well, we'll figure something out" I just don't know anymore...What am I supposed to do? I'm 16 and having all these I even gonna make it to 18? 21? I'm just so lost, and I feel so alone...

    See full photo

    Chasing Ghosts

    #MentalHealth #PANSPANDAS #Anxiety #AutoimmuneEncephalitis #Genetics

    Our son’s story of finally getting diagnosed with Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric
    Syndrome (PANS)

    It was 2013 when I found myself at the local library thumbing through a book about Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections (PANDAS). I was scanning the pages for a solution on how to “fix” our son but nothing in this story sounded familiar. My husband told me I was chasing ghosts and maybe he was right. But I was still slipping into a yearlong obsession to find answers.
    At the time, Chris was six years old and we had already weathered through a handful of disturbances. With little guidance from our pediatrician, all of Chris’s issues had been explained away. The night terrors, the constant infections and fevers since birth - all were “normal”. But it wasn’t normal to us - he was having two or three a night terrors a night and their effects were spilling into his daytime life; he was exhausted, anxious, and started panicking every time I left the house. We were eventually given the anxiety diagnosis and Chris started meeting with a child therapist to learn how to talk down to his “brain monsters” (if only it had been that easy). Our pediatrician also offered an anti-depressant and we declined. He was only six years old and none of this felt right. A final blow, the pediatrician asked the dreaded question, “Does anyone in the family have a history of mental illness?”. I found myself confessing that at the same age, I also had panic attacks and separation anxiety. I explained that it eventually went away, however, as an adult, it morphed into a generalized anxiety that would rear its head during times of high stress and interestingly, during times of illness. In that moment, after I confessed my little secret, Chris’s health issues seemed to be immediately filed under the “Apple doesn’t fall far from the tree” folder or at least that’s how it felt.
    Through all of these appointments what was never discussed was Chris’s health history. His actual medical file, if anyone had bothered to look, was full of emergency room visits and hospitalizations. By three weeks old Chris spiked a 104 fever and was rushed to the hospital for a full septic work up. He was admitted for five days until the fever subsided. Bloodwork was inconclusive and we were sent home only to be readmitted four days later when another high fever spiked. No explanation from either hospital stay but now our nerves were rattled. In addition to the random high fevers, Chris’s first year of life was riddled with ear infections; ten in ten months to be exact, and two burst ear drums. By the time he turned three, the high fevers seemed normal to us. And then there was the Cervical Adenitis episode - an infected and inflamed lymph node in the neck. After a CT scan and another scheduled surgery, his lump was eventually drained under anesthesia and we were sent home with a three month supply of antibiotics and zero explanation of how or why this happened.
    These medical events from Chris’s infancy and toddler years were never brought up during therapy sessions. And I wanted to know how these awful fevers and infections were related to his night terrors and his growing separation anxiety? These questions wouldn’t leave me and instinct finally started to kick in. I had to stop shying away from pushing the doctors because I was embarrassed about my own history with anxiety. So that’s how I ended up at the library surrounded by medical journals that I barely understood and stories of children with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) that came on overnight.
    Life marched along for us and we started chalking Chris’s anxieties to him just being “difficult” or “overtired”. However, after Chris’s 11 year old well visit, life as we knew it would be thrown off course for good. This visit included two booster vaccines (DTap and Meningitis) seven antigens at once. The appointment had been on a Friday and by Sunday night Chris was feverish and complaining of a headache. On Monday the school called, Chris was having a full-blown panic attack and I had to come get him right away. I took him straight to the pediatrician and after a quick eyeballing of his state (dark circles under his eyes and ghost white skin) and a glance at his file (you know the one) the pediatrician dismissed us with a “maybe he’s just afraid of shots” comment. This was the norm for us now. Any time I questioned the connection between Chris’s health and his anxiety I was told again and again that “anxiety just runs in families”.
    Chris sat on the couch that afternoon and sobbed and sobbed.... for hours! I had never witnessed anything like this and that night he started having night terrors again and every night after that for the next month. The school mornings became torture; we had to scrape him off the floor and wrestle him into the car. This was a new hell for our family, the intermittent night terrors and separation anxiety was one thing to deal with, but this, this was sheer awfulness.
    I started chasing ghosts again, but this time I saw them for what they really were; our genetics. With the help of a few selfless academics that took the time to answer my desperate emails I was pointed in the right direction. And that direction was 50 miles north in Boston. The day had finally come and we were seated in front of a doctor that specialized in PANDAS and PANS. He listened to me rattle off Chris’s symptoms, illnesses, lumps, fevers, the whole time he patiently took notes. I had been bracing for the mental illness confession but instead I found myself answering questions about my mother’s sisters that had rheumatic fever as children, my grandmother (their mother) that suffered from debilitating rheumatoid arthritis, and my own mother who had Polymyalgia rheumatica. It was becoming apparent how relevant it was that Autoimmune Disease ran on my side of the family. This doctor discussed with us that Chris most likely had a fever syndrome as an infant and toddler (random fevers and cervical adenitis were hallmarks of an autoinflammatory disorder called Periodic Fever, Aphthous Stomatitis,

    Pharyngitis, Adenitis (PFAPA)). We walked away that day with a diagnosis of PANS. The next stop, tonsillectomy and antibiotics. The ghosts had spoken!
    Chris had not inherited an anxiety disorder; he had inherited an immune system with a roadmap that had mistakes. Slowly, he started getting better. The night terrors disappeared and along with them, the day time anxieties.
    For our son, symptom onset was not overnight. He had so many health issues starting the first few weeks of life, which continued throughout his early childhood. His body was in a near- constant state of infection and inflammation. Add in his medical history to a family history riddled with autoimmune and strep-related health issues and it is no wonder that our son has PANS/PANDAS.
    Today we know the flares will come but we now have a plan. We have doctors to call for advice and treatment and we have a village of families just like ours that we can reach out to. Our hope is that all of this hell that Chris has been through has some purpose. I hope his story resonates with a parent out there searching for answers. It took our family 11 years to get Chris diagnosed and on the path to healing. I hope someone reads this and the time it takes to find help is cut in half. Please remember that the ghosts and secrets we carry with us are there for a reason. #Parenting #Gaslighting


    Today is an exciting day.

    Today I am having a sleepover with a potential dog I want to adopt. I’m hoping this will help with the loneliness I constantly feel… #SeparationAnxiety #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #BPD #OCD #PTSD


    Home Alone; The night my separation anxiety was born

    I’m sharing this story because I have recently become aware that it could have something to do with my diagnosis.  Whether or not it does, it is still a childhood #Trauma that I ‘survived’, but not without some lasting effects.

    Being home alone at night is one thing when you’re an adult, try it when you’re 4!  It was a very cold , dark night back in the winter of 1979.  I forget the exact date, sometime in January, I think.  My mother had tucked me into bed and kissed me goodnight.  A few hours later, about 2-3a.m., I awoke, as usual.  This was a common thing for me, I found myself at the foot of my parents bed quite often.  But this night was different; my parents weren’t in their bed!  I immediately began screaming for my mom. “Mommy, mommy!!”  No answer.  I was scared out of my wits! I ran around the pitch black house screaming and turning on every lamp and light switch that I could reach. I went to my older brother Greg’s bedroom door and banged and banged on it; no answer!  I remember being terrified beyond belief; I was just 4 years old and home alone in the middle of the night!

    There was about 6 inches of snow on the ground and more lightly falling, it was probably 20-30 degrees outside, typical of a Michigan winters’ night.  I had rationalized in my young mind that my mom must have gone to Hamady’s (out local grocery store).  My mother practically lived there.  She ran to Hamady’s on a daily basis for bread or milk, and I always went with her.  And at that moment I decided that’s where I was going to look for her!  I frantically ran to my bedroom to get dressed.  I found a pair of cut-off jean shorts and a t-shirt, that I put on backwards.  I tried to be brave as I prepared to head out into the cold to walk the 2 mile walk to the grocery store;  all the while crying hysterically.

    Just as I opened the big, heavy front door, I saw headlights coming up the driveway.  My mother flew out of the car and cradled me in her arms.  My dad, on the other hand, wanted to kill my brother!  He had been given strict orders not to shut his bedroom door just in case I woke up.  My mother had gone to the airport to pick my father up from a late night business flight.  I sobbed for most of the rest of that night and I don’t think I’ve ever been the same since.

    After that incident, I became very attached to my mother; So much so that I was kicked out of preschool, because I cried for her the whole time.  When I started kindergarten, I became attached to a playmate of mine, and even though she was in kindergarten also, she was my ‘surrogate’ mom.  I used to tell my mom that when she died I’d bury her under the house so I could sleep next to her.  Needless to say, my attachment was slightly unhealthy.  I wonder if I have suffered permanent damage from that experience.  When you read this, it may not seem like a big #Trauma , but to a 4year old little girl, being home alone was a nightmare!

    See full photo

    So glad to have my sunshine back🥰

    She was staying with an acquaintance due to work appointments who lives a three hour drive away, for 4 days. It’s like my heart was not where I was, especially because he is one of those people that are not good for my separation anxiety - I didn’t hear for two days how she was doing and couldn’t get a hold of him.
    I could not be happier having her back at my side after those four days that felt like forever🥰
    #Anxiety #Depression #BPD #MightyPets #happytogether #furever