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Advice for people with Anxiety
Posted by
16th May 2014

SANE supporter Alex reflects on her experiences with anxiety and depression, and discusses what advice she would give to someone who may be in a similar position.

I want to tell you how I coped with depression and anxiety at such a young age, but first I will give you some background. Being diagnosed with depression and anxiety at 16 was so daunting; I thought it was something older people got. I never once imagined I'd be sat in the doctors surgery being diagnosed, however as scary as it was, I was relieved to have a diagnosis and to know I wasn't alone because it meant now that I could deal with it and get better.†

Anyone living with anxiety knows it's hard and sometimes unbearable. I became a recluse, I didn't leave the house without my mum, and even with her I was always on edge and I was guaranteed numerous panic attacks every time I left the house. My body was constantly full of adrenaline meaning my heart would be racing constantly, and the smallest tasks like emptying the dishwasher would leave me physically exhausted. I couldn't sleep because my body was physically so alert because of the adrenaline; I lost all my appetite and worst of all I lost myself. It stemmed down to a phobia of vomiting, so eating, drinking and socializing were becoming almost impossible, I lost all my friends and had to drop out of Sixth Form because I couldn't go in. It got to a point where my mum offered to sit outside Sixth Form whilst I went to lessons, I still couldn't do that. My weight dropped over two stone leaving me at 6 stone 11lbs and I felt like this was all life had for me.

Luckily, I had my mum who is the reason I am writing this today and who was my rock throughout my horrendous ordeal that went on for 4 years and that still creeps up to me today. If I had to tell people going through the same thing any advice it would be the following;

1. Go to the doctors, you’re not alone. The stigma of antidepressants isn't real. They don't make you weak. They saved my life.

2. Your family love you more than anybody and will never give up on you. Tell them how you feel; they will get you through it.

3. As much as you can, carry on as normal. Wake up every morning with a positive outlook, I wish I had done this.†

4. Don't ever give up on yourself. You’re worth everything. You are so important.

5. Everything on this planet is temporary. You will get through this.

6. Sometimes it's ok not to be ok.

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