Welcome to the Anxiety Forum - A Home for Those with Anxiety, Fear, or Panic Attacks.
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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2018

    Need advice about talking to someone with severe anxiety

    Hi, I am new here and had a question about how to go about this situation I find myself in. Their is a girl I have been friends with for years, we hang out frequently in group settings and always have fun when we are out together, but I find myself wanting to ask her out on a real 1 on 1 date. She has fairly severe social anxiety and is prone to panic attacks, so I was wondering how would you suggest talking to her about it? I don't want her to feel cornered when I ask so I was unsure if this was something I should ask of her in person, or should I text her in order to give her time to process before replying.

    I'm sure you get this question asked on forums like this a lot, I was just curious on how others would go about this. She is still my friend and the last thing I would want to do is to make things so awkward with her that we never hang out again.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    I'm sure others will chime in with their experiences soon. What I'd say, though, is to make the whole thing seem low pressure, and fun.

    What I find hardest about mental illness isn't the symptoms, it's the expectations others put on me: to perform, to conform, to meet their needs. I tend to subconsciously avoid people that expect too much of me or try to restrict my freedom to have bad moments/days.

    Everybody has their own preferences, but for the reasons mentioned above, I'd find text messaging ok. Gives a person time to think.
    Last edited by Pollyfama; 12-09-2018 at 04:02 PM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    It's asked from time to time, but in comparison to those dealing with their own anxiety; not a lot. You make me think of one of my daughters in this situation.

    Your approach will be influenced by your own intentions. That is to say you may either be seen more as support person Vs a more interment relationship. I could link you to various articles on how to talk to someone with severe social anxiety and panic attacks, but that may have this girl see you more as a support person rather than a friend to open up on a different level. Understanding this may help you to present more as a buddy that just wants to connect rather than someone who want's to fix. I understand you don't want to appear like a life saver, but my experience has shown me if you go in from a support persons point of view treading on egg shells, that it will do you no favors with regards to your true feeling for her.

    So what to do?

    My advice ... don't focus on the labels. Just treat her as a friend minus the eggshells. This will take confidence on your part and there is no reason you can't follow the normal advice in respect to such. Showing confidence around this girl will more than likely allow her that you accept her for who she is. Don't try too hard ... just be yourself. Be prepared that she may just want to remain friends. It's good that your acknowledging her vulnerability, because if you go into this without thinking you could possible set her up for a big fall. At least posting and asking others your already showing your be more able to handle whatever. Again ... accept what ever way she swings ... just be yourself and don't focus too much on her labels.

    Consider how your question reflects your own apprehension. People with anxiety tend to feed off others who are also anxious. Be her anchor but not a career. Come to terms with both endings - Accept that and you'll be on your way to making the both of yourselves feel a lot less awkward no matter what you practice saying or were you research taking her. Do it right and she will go anywhere with you.

    Good luck!
    Last edited by Ponder; 12-09-2018 at 04:01 PM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Maine, United States
    Ambiguous, I think it's great that you care about the feeling of this girl, that you don't want to make her feel cornered and pressured. That shows that you have a lot of consideration for the feelings of others.



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