Anxiety can make us say mean things, regrettably, no matter how nice we are. I would say that I am a nice person. Indeed, I would go as far to say that my “niceness” is often viewed as a defining characteristic to my closest friends. As far as I know myself, this isn’t just appearances. I do care deeply about people and feel a great sadness when learning about other people’s unhappiness and disappointments. I cannot bear to hear stories of loneliness and abandonment . I do not think that I have ever intended to hurt anybody or that I have ever taken pleasure in another person’s unhappiness. But I have said mean things when anxiety got the better of me.

    Saying Mean Things Due to Anxiety Leads to Regret

    At the time of writing, I have, touch wood, a tight reign on my mental health. I am on a medication dosage that suits me, have received counselling and cognitive behaviour therapy and have an all around good grasp on my physical and mental wellbeing. However, there has been times in my life when I have had much less control and have said things, nasty things, during times of intense anxiety and depression , that I deeply regret. I have used words that I would otherwise abhore and be greatly offended by. I have made comments about other people’s intelligence and appearance that horrify me upon reflection. I have overreacted to situations and have ended up insulting people beyond what was necessary with my words and actions.

    For a long time, I wondered if these outbursts have revealed a crueller side of my personality, a side that I can usually suppress when in better health. I have felt a profound sense of guilt due to this, and a great feeling of despair that I may well never find closure or a release for this guilt. Although it is, of course, important to acknowledge when we have wronged others, it is also important to make peace with ourselves and to move on . I have found that the best way to prevent these outbursts is to figure out where they are coming from and what triggers them.

    Anxiety Makes You Say Mean Things Out of Fear and Frustration

    Anxiety and depression can bring about strong feelings of fear, frustration and anguish and this can lead to misunderstandings. I have gone through phases of being extremely agoraphobic, to the point where even dashing to the corner shop felt like a terrible ordeal. This has been incredibly constricting and, at times, has narrowed my life and my thoughts considerably. I have had to deal with people treating me “differently” to how they might treat a person in good mental health. This has led to me feeling hopelessly cut adrift from other people.

    It isn’t always just the out and out nastiness that can hurt. Sometimes people will treat you very gently as if they are worried you might explode at any given moment. Other people will not know how to react around you. They will shift uncomfortably in their seats and shoot each other awkward, embarrassed looks. They might even actively avoid participating in conversation with you. This is to be expected in a society where mental health still isn’t spoken about enough ( What Is Stigma? ). For the most part, I do not judge people who do not know how to treat people with mental health problems . However, this logic has completely evaded me at times, causing me to lash out.

    During my more anxious times, a misplaced word or look can feel loaded with intent and can send me into a panicked cycle of fear and paranoia . Of course, this is not an excuse but I feel that it is important that these crashing cycles of anxiety are understood. I have written before about how anxiety can make you very inward-looking to the point of appearing self-absorbed . Sometimes, anxiety can even blind you to the impact that your own negative behaviour can have on others.

    Anxiety Can Make You Speak Before You Think Video

    Find Julia on Facebook , Twitter , Google+ , LinkedIn and at her blog .

    APA Reference Banim, J. (2016, May 3). Anxiety Can Make You Say Mean Things, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2022, August 5 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/anxiety-schmanxiety/2016/05/how-anxiety-can-make-you-say-mean-things

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    Source: www.healthyplace.com

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