The truth about being a mom with social anxiety


           Hi, Im Monica. I have a beautiful five month old baby boy, Im married to a wonderful man, I love Jesus, and I have social anxiety.

I found out about my anxiety in college, my whole life I knew something was ‘different’ about me but I could never put a finger on it. Once I got diagnosed I was able to learn how to control it and get through it. Heres something most people don’t know, you can have good times for weeks, and then suddenly it comes back with a vengeance. You can have three or four bad days and then a few good in-between.

Lindsey Holmes, from Huffington post, states that nearly “40 million U.S. adults” will experience some sort of anxiety disorder every year. I have been dealing with this since I was in high school. I am twenty-four now, and even though I know how to deal with it, I still have episodes.

I led worship this past Sunday, on the way to the rehearsal Thursday night, my hands started sweating, my heartbeat became faster, and I felt like I was going to pass out. I was at the beginning of a panic attack. I was driving so my mind kept saying, “You can’t do this now” and I began to count to ten out loud and take deep breaths. I put on some music and started singing to it. I luckily was able to calm down, but I was very scared and stressed.

Anxiety attacks can happen anytime and anywhere. Now that Im a mother, it makes things harder sometimes. I have more stress than I had before I had my son, and I have to be sure I handle it better. I take an herbal supplement everyday that helps to regulate vitamins and things my body is missing. This usually helps but sometimes I have to take a prescription medication from my doctor.

It always looks like I am handling things well, and I always seem put together, however, I often feel frazzled. People make me so nervous and Im super introverted. As a mom, and a wife, I don’t get the alone time I need to be able to regulate my thoughts and emotions. Somedays its hard, others I feel fine. There are days I don’t know how Im going to make it through, and I cry. There are days when Im fine and am able to get all the things done that I need to accomplish.

Anxiety is a mental disorder. If you truly have an anxiety disorder, you’ll know that you can’t turn it off. Most people experience some sort of anxiety in their life, but, they do not “have” anxiety. They are merely going through a stressful situation causing them to be anxious about something. Its different from actually having a disorder. I say this because I’ve been told before to “just get over it” and thats not possible. There are days I don’t want to see anyone, days I hope no one asks me anything.

Writing is easier because I don’t have to interact. As a mom, I can’t do that, I have to constantly interact with my son and other people. I’ve had to reroute the way I do things, I have to remember to ask my husband for help. I have to remind myself that things will get done eventually but my son is the focus. I deal with it by reading for enjoyment, writing, listening to music, and occasionally giving myself a spa night.I also have to make sure I spend some time with God. I can always see a difference in my day when I spend some time with Him. Sometimes I make myself something I enjoy eating, and when I get the chance to exercise I do!

If you’re a mom, struggling with social anxiety please, send me a message! I would love to encourage and talk to you. Even if you’re not a mom, please feel free to talk to me. Healing and relief come the easiest by talking to someone about what you’re going through! Its not easy, and when you have a baby it seems even harder, but, you can do this. I can do this.

Much love,