5 Tips for Dating Someone With Anxiety
Updated: May 4, 2021
If your partner has anxiety, you might be struggling to understand what they’re going through. The truth is that mental health conditions can put serious strain on relationships. However, with a few key strategies, you can better connect with your partner and support both of your needs.
How to Date Someone with Anxiety
Listening is often the best place to start. When your partner is ready, sit down with them to talk about their anxiety. Encourage them to open up about their symptoms and how the condition affects their daily life. You might not know what anxiety feels like, but seeking this understanding will help you empathize.
It’s also important to understand where your partner is in their treatment journey. Ask whether they’re seeing a therapist and taking anxiety medication. You should also ask what you can do to better support them as they manage their mental health.
Find Some Resources
Even when your partner opens up to you about their anxiety symptoms, it’s not their job to educate you about the condition. In fact, doing so might be exhausting for them. You can be a more supportive partner by taking the time to learn about anxiety yourself. Read books, blogs, and watch videos to learn more about how anxiety affects the brain and body. Your partner’s behavior will likely make more sense to you.
Learn Their Triggers
Depending on the severity of your partner’s anxiety, they might have certain triggers that make their anxiety symptoms worse. Some common anxiety triggers include stress from work or school, social situations, confrontations with loved ones, and changes in routine. It’s also common for caffeine or a lack of sleep to exacerbate anxiety symptoms. Learning your loved one’s symptoms can help you predict a spike in anxiety and provide more effective support.
Remember, your support isn’t a replacement for counseling. You can be there to listen and provide comfort, but behavioral therapy for anxiety is what your partner needs for true healing. Don’t hesitate to set these boundaries if you feel that your partner is treating you like a therapist.
You might offer to help your partner find a therapist or even drive them to their appointments. It’s also normal and healthy to take space apart, so be sure to advocate for your own needs. You both need time to recharge.
Take Care of Yourself
You love your partner, but this doesn’t change the fact that dating someone with anxiety can be taxing. It’s important to fill your cup as well. Consider seeking your own individual counseling to better support your mental health needs. You might be surprised by how much more centered you feel. Seeking mental health support for yourself will help you be a better partner while tending to your own needs.
Whether you’re seeking counseling services for yourself or a loved one, The Collective is here to help. Our mental health professionals offer the anxiety counseling Denver residents trust. With a holistic approach to mental health and counseling services, we offer therapy for individuals and groups, psychiatric services, health coaching, and more for our clients. Contact us today to schedule a consultation with one of our providers.