Did you know that when you are anxious it can lead your child to exhibit similar behaviors through their life? It can even lead your child to developing an anxiety disorder of their own. A study has shown a strong correlation between parental modeling and anxiety in their offspring, which should make it is a serious concern for all parents struggling with anxiety.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, more than 18% of the US population over the age of eighteen suffer from anxiety disorders, making it the number one mental health complaint in the country. That means that forty million of us every year are struggling with severe psychological and emotional symptoms.
Unfortunately, that statistic doesn’t exist in a vacuum. As the first study shows, our family is just as hurt by our anxiety as we are. Perhaps even more so because, as they are helpless to stop our acting out when we go over the edge. So it is up to us to mitigate the damage created by our anxiety. To this end, I have brought together some actions you can start to take manage your anxiety.
Be Open About Your Struggle
The first step is to admit to your family that you are struggling, so talking to them while being open and honest is very important. Giving them an understanding of your struggles with anxiety can away some of the fear they may be feeling and helps them keep you accountable for your actions. Tell them:
- How you are feeling,
- What they can do to help you
- What you are doing to manage your anxiety
Get Professional Help
If you are having trouble maintaining your day-to-day tasks, it is critical that you get professional help. Whether that help is medication combined with therapy or simply behavioral therapy, seeing someone who is trained to be objective can greatly help you manage your anxiety. A good therapist will also help to alleviate some of your anxieties and help isolate more serious problems.
Take Time To Work On Your Marriage
Between child-raising and the usual stresses of life, our focus on our marriages can be the first thing to go by the wayside. But your partner is one of your major supports, as well as the person who can help you the most in a time of crisis. Take time to nurture your marriage, even when it feels overwhelming to do so.
Don’t Be Afraid To Take Me Time
Parental guilt is so common these days. We see these organic, handcrafted, gourmet cookie platters on Pinterest made by mommy bloggers who knit all of their children’s clothes with the naturally preserved wool from their pet sheep and think that we are failing. So we overcompensate and run ourselves ragged.
Take a deep breath and have some me time without the guilt. You are doing fine and you would be amazed at how much something as simple as a glass of wine or a day out of the house alone can do for your mental health.
Learning how to face and begin managing our anxiety is difficult task. But for the sake of your spouse, your children, and especially for your own sake, you need to make the effort to start controlling your anxious mind.