TO THE NURSE WHO ASKED ME "COULDN'T YOU JUST GROW OUT OF IT?"
A few weeks ago, I was hit hard by anxiety.
My name is Emilie, I am 18 years old and have a severe anxiety disorder.
A few weeks ago I had excruciating chest pains, dizziness, sweating, and felt as if my throat was closing. I did not know anxiety could cause chest pains, especially that painful, so I ended up in my local walk in centre after being turned away from my doctors surgery when the receptionist said all of the doctors were out on house calls...
In the walk in centre I was seen to by a nurse and obviously, after ruling out any other possible causes for the pain she concluded it was due to my anxiety disorder. She then went on to ask me 'Couldn't you just grow out if it?' I was speechless. How can a medical professional ask someone suffering with a mental health illness to grow out if it? All I could do was give her a horrified look and say 'No'. I wish I could of said more and stood up for sufferers everywhere, but my mind was too busy trying to compute what she, a nurse, actually said.
When I got home I tried to distract myself from the pain and discomfort by watching TV & reading one of my favourite photography magazines but I soon decided the best thing to do would be to just sleep it off. I managed to fall asleep despite the chest pains and felt so much better when I work up. The chest pains had finally gone and I no longer felt panicked, sweaty or dizzy. My mum was a big help and was there for me when I was in pain & upset. She really knew how to calm me down and make me feel better. When suffering with a mental illness it is so important to have at least someone you can turn to for support and comfort and I am so lucky that for me that person is my mum! I also have family members & a friend to turn to which is an incredibly lucky thing to have as I know not a lot of sufferers have that.
I feel the need to share this due to the stigma around mental health and to let other sufferers know the possible symptoms to expect. People need to be educated and understand mental health and that it is not something you can simply grow out of, or I would have!
I hope you enjoyed this blog post, feel free to let me know what you think or if you can relate in the comments!