In all relationships, misunderstandings sometimes occur, but they are more common in relationships where one partner suffers from anxiety.
Anxiety is a complex mental disorder that can create problems in communication with a partner.
It is clear to you that this is precisely the stumbling block in your relationship.
How exactly is your girlfriend’s anxiety ruining your relationship? Anxiety makes healthy communication difficult, creates misunderstanding, distances partners from each other, and starts many arguments.
All that affects you badly, too, because you wonder if you are a lousy boyfriend when you think dating someone with anxiety is exhausting.
You care about your girlfriend, but every attempt to help her seems to make more of a problem.
In this article, we will explain how anxiety destroys relationships and give tips on how to help your girlfriend.
How Does Anxiety Ruins Relationships?
Here are some concrete examples of how your girlfriend’s anxiety is ruining your relationship:
1. Anxiety Creates Jealousy
Jealousy and anxiety, unfortunately, go very well together.
If your girlfriend is anxious, don’t be surprised if she is excessively jealous.
And that excessive jealousy can often be the cause of breaking up a relationship.
Especially when you don’t give any reason for it, but she still makes jealous scenes.
A jealous girl like this probably questions everything you do.
Imagine the situation, you go out somewhere with friends, it doesn’t even have to be a big party or something like that, but just for a drink at a bar, and she makes a huge problem because of that.
Your girlfriend already has scenarios in her head, how other girls approach you, how you flirt with them, and finally break up with her.
Her anxiety makes her think that it’s best if you don’t have friends.
Likewise, with your phone and social networks, she is very jealous of everything that happens there and how much time you spend on your phone.
Who do you follow on Instagram, and whose photos do you like and comment on? She must know everything.
This problem can go too far because she can also be jealous when you go to work.
She can think that you don’t respect boundaries with female coworkers, even though you’re just doing your job and behaving professionally all the time.
Behind this can be personal insecurities and anxieties that tell her she is not good enough for you and her fear of rejection.
2. Your Girlfriend Cancels Plans Because of Anxiety
How many times have your plans fallen through at the last minute because your girlfriend changed her mind at the last minute?
You plan a romantic weekend getaway together.
Or going to a concert of your favorite band, and at the last minute, your girlfriend decides she doesn’t feel like going.
Of course, it doesn’t make sense to you that someone cancels plans just like that.
You even think it’s rude of her to ruin plans and fun for you.
Know that it’s not your girlfriend’s fault that she has a sudden anxiety attack right before you’re supposed to go somewhere.
Also, if you are an outgoing person who likes to be active and go out, and that’s how you imagine a relationship, there may be misunderstandings.
Your girlfriend who suffers from anxiety avoids crowds, new places, and any way out of the safety of her comfort zone.
3. Your Girlfriend Doesn’t Want to See You
Has it ever happened that your girlfriend tells you that she doesn’t want to see you?
And it happens without reason because you didn’t do anything wrong, and she is usually lovely and sweet.
She tells you she needs some time to be alone, and you take it wrong.
You understand this like she doesn’t care about you and is subtly telling you that she wants you to break up, but it’s not like that.
People who struggle with anxiety value their time for themselves.
It is a form of self-care for them; they need it to calm their minds from all those overwhelming thoughts.
4. Your Relationship is Not Going in The Right Direction
You’ve been together for a while but are making slow progress in your relationship.
Each relationship is a story in itself, and not all relationships progress the same, which is quite normal.
But it seems to you that her anxiety is blocking your relationship and that you would be much happier off without that obstacle.
Your girlfriend, taught by previous bad experiences, is too afraid of being hurt again, and that’s why it’s too difficult for her to open up to you now.
She seems to avoid opening up to you and blocks her emotions.
Her anxiety is her defensive shield, which prevents her from being hurt and restricts her from such fears.
Also, if she is too jealous, it may be too much for you, or you will become jealous too.
We know that jealousy quickly becomes mutual between both partners.
7 Tips for Dating Someone With Anxiety
Dating someone with anxiety can seem challenging, but with the right attitude and approach, it doesn’t have to be difficult at all.
Here are some useful tips:
1. Accept That Your Girlfriend Has a Problem
We hope you are not the kind of person who does not take mental illness seriously and ignores its danger.
It’s completely wrong if you don’t acknowledge your girlfriend has anxiety and tell her it’s nothing.
Instead, accept it, which is the first step towards understanding and helping her better.
2. Don’t Blame Your Girlfriend For Being Anxious
Did you know that according to ADAA research, anxiety is the most common mental disorder, affecting 40 million adults in the U.S. population?
A huge number, isn’t it?
You shouldn’t blame your girlfriend for having a problem with anxiety because that is the clearest sign that you are not the right guy for her.
3. Don’t Try to Fix Her
This is an important tip.
We know you want to be the knight in shining armor and save her from that monster, but you can’t do it.
Her struggle with anxiety is hers alone, and you can’t win that struggle for her.
We, humans, love to fix things. It makes us feel better about ourselves.
But people are not machines that can be fixed when they break; they are not puzzles to solve.
We know you think you’re a fire extinguisher, but you’re actually just adding fuel to the fire of her anxiety.
You will create an even bigger problem with those attempts, especially if your methods are wrong.
4. Be Understanding and Patient
Being understanding and considerate with your partner who struggles with anxiety is essential.
Anxiety is such that it can make your girlfriend behave entirely differently than usual.
Sometimes it just takes patience to prevent potential arguments due to your girlfriend’s anxiety attacks.
This means you let her cool down instead of immediately starting a drama about how she ruined your good mood.
Respect that she needs alone time instead of getting angry.
If some days are so bad that she can’t even get out of bed, don’t argue with her about it.
5. Learn About The Anxiety
If you have not encountered this problem before, please inform yourself about it.
The internet is full of such articles and videos, so you will quickly be able to understand anxiety better.
Study as much as possible about anxiety, panic attacks, anxiety triggers, and similar topics.
That way, you will have a clearer understanding of what your girlfriend is dealing with.
6. Choose the Right Words
Choosing the right words that you address to someone with a mental problem is of great importance.
We all know how important words are, they can lift someone up and help them, but they can also bring them down and make them feel worse.
Here’s what you should never say to your girlfriend who struggles with anxiety:
- You are just imagining; there is nothing wrong with you” – this is an entirely wrong approach that completely ignores her condition.
- “Just suck it up and push through” – would you tell someone with a broken arm to play basketball? This is the same.
- “Everyone feels sometimes stressed” – unfair comparison. Stress is a natural reaction to unexpected things, but anxiety is not.
- “You were fine a minute ago, and now you are freaking out” – that’s just how anxiety it is. Your girlfriend can be triggered in a moment and totally change her behavior.
- “It’s your fault for being anxious” – just don’t!
Here’s what you should actually say to your girlfriend who has anxiety issues:
- “I’m here if you wanna talk” – you must listen carefully and be there for her.
- “Take your time” – you give her space if she needs to be alone.
- “Do you want a hug?” – sometimes, a hug says more than words.
- “You are not a burden” – anxious people feel like they are a burden to others, but you assure her that it is not so.
- “It’s not your fault” – of course, it’s not her fault, and you should tell her that.
7. Encourage Your Girlfriend to Seek Professional Help
Just as we cannot always solve physical problems alone, neither can we solve mental problems.
If your girlfriend’s anxiety is causing significant problems in your relationship, suggest that she seek professional help.
The therapist will know to recommend the proper coping strategies against anxiety.
Most Importantly – Remember That Anxiety Does Not Define a Person
Just because your girlfriend has a problem doesn’t mean you should turn your back on her and ignore how amazing a person she is.
If you truly love her, focus on who she is outside of anxiety, not who she is when she’s having an anxiety attack.
It’s up to you to be her best support so your girlfriend can feel much better mentally and your relationship to blossom.