wE'Re AlL mAd HeRe

Anxiety, Social Anxiety, Panic… and the rest!

Here come the hens!

It’s my hen do this weekend. Feels mental even typing that, but it’s true. That means it’s sixty six days until the wedding. WOW… As long as I don’t have to become an adult any time soon then it’s all cool.

The destination of the hen do is a secret. *Sweats* Me? Surprises? I’m fine, it’s all totally fine. I don’t need to be in control…. I haven’t bought new clothes and five new items of makeup just for the occasion.. I’m laid back. F**K.

The saving grace is that my three best friends have organised it. They’ve known me for over ten years and therefore know what I like, (although I do need to be reminded of this on a weekly basis). So I trust them. Tbh, I wouldn’t mind if we were all stuck in a hotel together for two days.. as long as there’s a bar and we’re together then it’ll be great.

Bit of a pitiful topic today, so apologies! This is hard for me to discuss, because it makes me feel uncomfortable. I find it hard to accept love, it’s been part of my condition for as long as I can remember. I’m much better than I used to be, but it’s still there.
My anxiety isn’t kind, the voices aren’t loving or supportive. In contrast they’re vicious and constantly remind me that I’m worthless. Therefore, accepting that others care for me is difficult, because I don’t feel worthy of it. I physically flinch or cringe when people compliment me. Grand gestures can be an issue too and I often react badly. When I left for London all of my friends came out and gave me some really thoughtful presents. I was overwhelmed by the attention and couldn’t believe the effort they made. Inside I wanted to cry (with happiness), but outwardly I was stiff and awkward. Fortunately they all know what I’m like, and as I say I’m getting better… slowly.

Another reason why I don’t talk or write about this is because it’s an ‘inner battle’ and if I fear that if spoken about, it may appear as though I’m seeking sympathy or assurance, which I’m not. Plus, it wouldn’t help anyway. Even though rationally speaking of course I can recognise that others love me, just as I love them. But if it were as simple as ‘being told’ that the beliefs we harbour aren’t true then anxiety wouldn’t exist!

Recently the wedding and all the events that come with it has triggered these feelings. Weddings are expensive and time consuming (for everyone). Most of my family and friends will be travelling to London to attend. I’m having two hen do’s (two sets of friends, not for diva reasons)! Whilst I’m really excited about everything to come, part of me thinks:

“This is a burden to everyone and you’re not worth it.  People are secretly resenting spending all that money on the likes of you. You’re not relevant.”

Straight away I recognise that this is a classic ‘CBT’ thinking error – but the thought still hurts when it claws at my stomach. So I intend to tackle it head on over the next few weeks, rather than shying away and burying my head. How do you challenge a thought like that? Well a good place to start is to examine what evidence there is to back it up. When I say evidence I mean actual events and conversations, NOT thoughts.

Evidence to suggest that I’m a burden and nobody cares for me.

**tumble weed**

Evidence to suggest that I’m not a burden and people do care for me.

  • Every time I have a birthday or social event – people turn up. I can’t think of a time when at least 90% of the people invited didn’t attend.
  • I’ve had the same friends since I was twelve, and the ones I’ve made in London have also stayed strong (even though I’ve changed jobs). That’s not an accident. People don’t stay in touch if they don’t like each other!
  • I’ve been a bridesmaid TWICE.

Three will do for now. It’s funny how easily the brain banks irrational thoughts, but struggles to accept cold hard evidence! It’s a work in progress.

I’m starting to understand that the most important relationship is the one that you have with yourself. So take the time to be kind. (Or at least try).

To my girls – Thank you in advance for organising my wonderful hen do. I love you all so much and I never take for granted how lucky I am. xxxxxx

chicken-run

 

Categories: Anxiety, Social Anxiety

4 replies

  1. Have a brilliant hen weekend Claire!
    Enjoy xxx

  2. Have a wonderful time ❤
    PS I can really relate to the inner battle – those thoughts can still zoom up, out of nowhere, and bite me on the **ahem**, even at my great age…

  3. Best of luck!

    You deserve all that and more 😊.

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