Anxiety in relationships
Anxiety in relationships
Recently in our relationship counselling sessions with couples, there has been a greater visibility, a clarity, as to how anxiety can affect the wellbeing and harmony of the relationship. What is tangible is the obvious impact that a person living with anxiety has on their relationships, their family and the community that satellites around that family.
In some instances partners are saying “no” to wanting to continue in the relationship, citing the fact that they are living with increasing intensity, pressure, controlling behaviours, micro-managing, aggressiveness, irritability, neediness, intense emotional outbursts, and feeling emotional and mental fatigue from having to support and maintain the care of an often withdrawn, unsettled and contracted partner, and the considerable tension that is always prevalent or lurking close to the surface of the anxiety sufferer’s expression.
It is a fact that an enormous amount of people are living with anxiety as a medical diagnosis, yet there are very few who are able to discern and understand the energetic truth of why this is happening.
The Energetic Truth
Philosopher Serge Benhayon has shared this truth:
“The body is designed to be present at all times. In that presence, it knows all that is taking place and thus it can adjust and fully cope with all that is before it. Conversely, in the unknown of not being with our body, we are not equipped to handle the situation before us.”
and this . . .
“Anxiousness comes from the knowing that you are not equipped to deal with what is ahead of you. And you cannot deal with what is ahead of you if you are not with you.”
In the year (2019), Beyond Blue Australia released these statistics:
In any one year, around 1 million Australian adults have depression, and over 2 million have anxiety
On average, anxiety affects 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men at some stage in their lifetime
The Effects on Relationships
What is evident in speaking with people who are experiencing this condition, is that anxiety can dictate behaviours that the person living with and consumed with their own anxiety can often be oblivious to, or by choice ignore and suppress, due to the stigma or shame associated with not coping or feeling overwhelmed by life’s pressures and stresses.
Quite commonly and for obvious reasons, the anxiety sufferer does not register that the many behaviours and disordered expressions that occur from the disconnection to themselves can result in an accumulation and momentum of choices, becoming regular and repetitive ‘go-to’s’ of expression.
Without connection and its subsequent awareness –and therefore, the limitations on being able to have a true overview of the specific symptoms and behaviours – the individual may not be suspecting or reading the whole spectrum of their behaviours as being contributed to by the outplay of living with a level of anxiousness; and thus it is often the case that medical and or counselling support is not sought.
Common stories we hear, often from men, begin with their stating that they are “just experiencing extra stress at work”, or when pulling away and alienating themselves into withdrawing or distracted behaviours, that they have “got a lot on their mind at the moment”, or if coming home and exploding within the family dynamic, that they “have been triggered by the behaviours and intentions of others”. Women, on the other hand, can feel confused in their expression, communicating in ways that seem to oscillate between depression and anxiety, emotional manipulation, or if experiencing a heightened hormonal charge within the body, bringing an intensity or drive to their communication. Within a family environment this can place everyone on tenterhooks as to whether “Mum is ok today”.
With teenagers suffering anxiety, parents can be consumed with worrying about whether they are coping with their lives and can become very apprehensive in their parenting, holding back how they might truly want to address the issue for fear of driving the teenager to indulge in something even worse, behaviourally, or even life threatening.
Many family groups and couple relationships and even workplace colleagues are living in quite tense environments with a loved one who has not been diagnosed but that they suspect is suffering from this illness. There is a tendency towards non-disclosure from the anxiety sufferer, mostly due to shame, fear of being medicated, and wanting to ignore and over-ride the responsibility that comes with true self-reflection. This can then exacerbate the living conditions for everyone who is in a satellite (close) relationship with this person, if they are not at first reading what is happening to their friend, family member or work colleague. Reading and understanding the situation supports the ‘onlooker’ to be and remain a detached observer, thereby not absorbing the emotional outfall, and therefore allowing the possibility to offer true guidance or support.
It is not uncommon for a person suffering from anxiety to express to those who are their immediate and most intimate relationships from an accumulation of negative thoughts, overwhelm, paranoia, control and pressure. This can be quite confronting to be on the receiving end of if you are not detached enough to read the greater truth and fact that the person is expressing and therefore, ‘channelling’ from the disconnected aspect of themselves; and thus is evidently harming themselves and potentially others. Often these reactions and charged communications can be received and absorbed, and in so doing, taken on quite personally.
Not being able to be vulnerable and honest and admit to suffering from anxiety or feeling anxious can keep the sufferer, and the person engaged in relationship with them, held in an arrangement where the truth is taboo; this makes communications in the relationship unclear and often confusing emotionally. This lack of clarity or ignorance as to what is really going on with the person and their behaviour or symptoms can be a fertile breeding ground for reaction, blame, judgement and misunderstanding, as well as further disharmony and or abuse within the relationship.
Disturbances like these in a relationship can result in the relationship going quite off track in regard to its growth, distracting from the truth of what is really going on. In particular, people can become lost in fighting one another in the emotional intensity, convinced they are trying to address the other’s insecurities or fears when there is actually a deeper truth and understanding being missed and unaccounted for within the mess of the disharmony. This deeper truth is the outplay of living in disconnection from the inner being, and the anxiousness that becomes a way of life because of the lack of presence and connection within the body to the intelligence of one’s Soul.
A Relationship with Sensitivity
As an overview, what is very clear is that people living with and experiencing anxiousness are not always recording and or aware of how sensitive they are really feeling to the finer details surrounding them in their life and relationships. Unconsciously, they are actually sensing very accurately, as clocked by their very awake nervous system, everything that feels true or not true, loving or harming, harmonious or disharmonious, sad or truly joyful, still or in a harming momentum. Their body (nervous system) is very loudly communicating to them, as evidenced by the reality of the symptoms of anxiousness, that they have immediately registered something they are now reacting to. If they are not able to express to the detail what they are feeling, and thereby observe and learn from it, they then can absorb or ‘take on’ the ill expression of an experience or life encounter. These inner disturbances will percolate away from within, causing more inner harm and unsettlement unless the person is able to bring a deeper expression to communicating exactly what they are feeling. Without this process of fully allowing what they are feeling and then bringing understanding to their experiences, there can be no release and no true surrender and therefore, no true capacity to arrive at a real acceptance from the whole-body-minded-intelligence. Inevitably, without the true healing, what then occurs is a continuation of the feelings of anxiousness and adrenalin in the body.
Burying feelings and suppressing our inherent understanding of everything we are feeling in life supplies a momentum of behaviour that can cover up, block and dishonour our inner truth.
The body has its own natural intelligence, which is designed to release the truth that it feels and senses in absolute honesty, clarity and simplicity. When given permission to allow this process it facilitates a whole body, mind, Soul healing.
A Way Forward
To not live connected to our own awareness and allow an openness to express our true feelings unrestrained, can instantly arise anxiety from within, and instigate immediate disconnection and dis-association from our inner being and its multidimensional knowing of life. It also doesn’t allow anyone to get to the truth of what is really happening in any given moment and learn how to respond to it. This can be akin to living feeling shut-down or silenced, where eventually there may arise a panic for the truth to explode.
Having a register of what anxiety feels like in the body can identify that there is something that you need to address and go deeper into reflection with, to learn what you are really feeling. It is a ‘note to self’ that you have left your body and need to align back, or a signal that you have lost presence. A feeling of anxiousness therefore, does not have to be prolonged or lived until it has escalated to proportions that scare us or engender fear. Rather than being a reaction to a life experience or lesson, it can be responsibly expressed as a response. The permission you give yourself to express can unpack so much truth and facilitate great healing that is not ever just for one person alone.
What is evident in relationships is that there is value in having a vigilance in a relationship with yourself, or as a couple, two friends, family or work community, to witness and care about when a person withdraws or becomes disconnected from their true self. In disconnection from our essence many harming behaviours can occur and proliferate. Being present with ourselves allows true reading of life and greater understanding, and this brings greater inner self-confidence to deal with the moments in life that arise that disturb or scare us, thus quelling the stress and anxiety.
Living in connection consistently is the individual responsibility we can dedicate to all our relationships, beginning with the one with our self, and this would turn around dramatically the current ill trend of what we are living with in regard to anxiety in relationships.