Being an anxious person with any kind of actual physical health issue comes with it’s own special set of challenges.
It could perhaps mean you are going to engage in circular cause and effect arguments with yourself trying to figure out your symptoms. It could mean googling your symptoms until you convince yourself you are probably going to die. It could mean making your illness worse by having your stress levels burst through the roof.
Or it could mean not getting the help that you actually need.
In the last ten years, whenever I have paid a visit to the doctor, I have felt dismissed. I’m guessing that somewhere on my chart there is a little note that reads “anxious person”. I am also very forthcoming about my anxiety; if the doctor asks me if I’m anxious I’m going to say yes.
Usually it’s at that moment, I look at the doctors face, and I can see that he or she has stopped listening to me. They already know the answer. Whatever I am dealing with can be easily explained (or if you ask me, dismissed) as anxiety.
I get that anxiety can manifest itself in physical ways. And I’m positive that people with anxiety sometimes seek out medical help for these issues.
Don’t anxious people deal with legitimate health issues too, just like everyone else? (rhetorical question).
I’m sure I’m not the only one who has been through this.
All we want, all we really want, is five minutes of the doctor’s time in which we are actually heard and listened to. And you know what? If by the end of that you still think it’s anxiety related, I personally will accept your opinion.
But when you stop listening (and stop caring) as soon as the word “anxiety” comes up, I don’t know how else to feel but angry, disappointed, and unheard.
In this case you have to advocate for yourself. If you feel, like me, that you aren’t being listened to, then you need to do something about it. Don’t give up. Don’t let that be the end-all be-all. Find another doctor, find another way. See a chiropractor, dietitian, naturopath, do whatever you have to do to figure it out. You deserve a healthy body operating at full capacity.
Don’t give up on your health! Advocate for yourself.