Beneath my Magic Kingdom

A chronicle of depression by a magic obsessed dreamer
perspicious:

WHAT YOU SHOULD DO:    Stay with us and keep calm.The last thing we need when we’re panicking, is to have someone else panicking with us.
Offer medicine if we usually take it during an attack.You might have to ask whether or not we take medicine- heck, some might not; but please, ask. It really helps.
Move us to a quiet place.We need time to think, to breathe. Being surrounded by people isn’t going to help.
Don’t make assumptions about what we need. Ask.We’ll tell you what we need. Sometimes; you may have to ask- but never assume.
Speak to us in short, simple sentences.
Be predictable. Avoid surprises.
Help slow our breathing by breathing us or by counting slowly to 10.As odd as it sounds, it works.


WHAT YOU SHOULDN’T DO:1. Say, “You have nothing to be panicked about.”We know. Weknow. We know. And because we know we have nothing to be panicked about, we panic even more. When I realize that my anxiety is unfounded, I panic even more because then I feel like I’m not in touch with reality. It’s unsettling. Scary.Most of the time, a panic attack is irrational. Sometimes they stem from circumstances — a certain couch triggers a bad memory or being on an airplane makes you claustrophobic or a break up causes you to flip your lid — but mostly, the reasons I’m panicking are complex, hard to articulate or simply, unknown. I could tell myself all day that I have no reason to be having a panic attack and I would still be panicking. Sometimes, because I’m a perfectionist, I become even more overwhelmed when I think my behaviour is “unacceptable” (as I often believe it is when I’m panicking). I know it’s all in my mind, but my mind can be a pretty dark and scary place when it gets going.Alternate suggestion: Say, “I understand you’re upset. It is okay. You have a right to be upset and I am here to help.”2. Say, “Calm down.”This reminds me of a MadTV sketch where Bob Newhart plays a therapist who tells his patients to simply “Stop it!” whenever they express anxiety or fear. As a sketch, it’s funny. In real life, it’s one of the worst things you can do to someone having a panic attack. When someone tells me to “stop panicking” or to “calm down,” I just think, “Oh, okay. I haven’t tried that one. Hold on, let me get outa pen and paper and jot that down, you jerk.”Instead of taking action so that they do relax, simply telling a panicking person to “calm down” or “stop it” does nothing. No-thing.Alternate suggestion: The best thing to do is to listen and support. In order to calm them down without the generalities, counting helps.3. Say, “I’m just going to leave you alone for a minute.”Being left alone while panicking makes my heart race even harder. The last thing I want is to be left by myself with my troubled brain. Many of my panic attacks spark from over-thinking and it’s helpful to have another person with me, not only for medical reasons (in case I pass out or need water) but also it’s helpful to have another person around to force me to think about something other than the noise in my head.Alternate suggestion: It sometimes helps me if the person I’m with distracts me by telling me a story or sings to me. I need to get out of my own head and think about something other than my own panic.4. Say, “You’re overreacting.”Here’s the thing: I’m not. Panic attacks might be in my head, but I’m in actual physical pain. If you’d cut open your leg, no one would be telling you you’re overreacting. It’s a common trope in mental health to diminish the feelings or experience of someone suffering from anxiety or panic because there’s no visible physical ailment and because there’s no discernible reason for the person to be having such a strong fear reaction.The worst thing you can tell someone who is panicking is that they are overreacting.Alternate suggestion: Treat a panic attack like any other medical emergency. Listen to what the person is telling you. Get them water if they need it. It helps me if someone rubs my back a little. If you’re in over your head, don’t hesitate to call 911 (or whatever the emergency services number is where you are). But please, take the person seriously. Mental health deserves the same respect as physical health.

CREDIT [X]  [X]

perspicious:

WHAT YOU SHOULD DO:
    
  1. Stay with us and keep calm.
    The last thing we need when we’re panicking, is to have someone else panicking with us.

  2. Offer medicine if we usually take it during an attack.
    You might have to ask whether or not we take medicine- heck, some might not; but please, ask. It really helps.

  3. Move us to a quiet place.
    We need time to think, to breathe. Being surrounded by people isn’t going to help.

  4. Don’t make assumptions about what we need. Ask.
    We’ll tell you what we need. Sometimes; you may have to ask- but never assume.

  5. Speak to us in short, simple sentences.

  6. Be predictable. Avoid surprises.

  7. Help slow our breathing by breathing us or by counting slowly to 10.
    As odd as it sounds, it works.
WHAT YOU SHOULDN’T DO:

1. Say, “You have nothing to be panicked about.”
We know. Weknow. We know. And because we know we have nothing to be panicked about, we panic even more. When I realize that my anxiety is unfounded, I panic even more because then I feel like I’m not in touch with reality. It’s unsettling. Scary.

Most of the time, a panic attack is irrational. Sometimes they stem from circumstances — a certain couch triggers a bad memory or being on an airplane makes you claustrophobic or a break up causes you to flip your lid — but mostly, the reasons I’m panicking are complex, hard to articulate or simply, unknown. I could tell myself all day that I have no reason to be having a panic attack and I would still be panicking. Sometimes, because I’m a perfectionist, I become even more overwhelmed when I think my behaviour is “unacceptable” (as I often believe it is when I’m panicking). I know it’s all in my mind, but my mind can be a pretty dark and scary place when it gets going.

Alternate suggestion: Say, “I understand you’re upset. It is okay. You have a right to be upset and I am here to help.”


2. Say, “Calm down.”
This reminds me of a MadTV sketch where Bob Newhart plays a therapist who tells his patients to simply “Stop it!” whenever they express anxiety or fear. As a sketch, it’s funny. In real life, it’s one of the worst things you can do to someone having a panic attack. When someone tells me to “stop panicking” or to “calm down,” I just think, “Oh, okay. I haven’t tried that one. Hold on, let me get outa pen and paper and jot that down, you jerk.

Instead of taking action so that they do relax, simply telling a panicking person to “calm down” or “stop it” does nothing. No-thing.

Alternate suggestion: The best thing to do is to listen and support. In order to calm them down without the generalities, counting helps.


3. Say, “I’m just going to leave you alone for a minute.”
Being left alone while panicking makes my heart race even harder. The last thing I want is to be left by myself with my troubled brain. Many of my panic attacks spark from over-thinking and it’s helpful to have another person with me, not only for medical reasons (in case I pass out or need water) but also it’s helpful to have another person around to force me to think about something other than the noise in my head.

Alternate suggestion: It sometimes helps me if the person I’m with distracts me by telling me a story or sings to me. I need to get out of my own head and think about something other than my own panic.


4. Say, “You’re overreacting.”
Here’s the thing: I’m not. Panic attacks might be in my head, but I’m in actual physical pain. If you’d cut open your leg, no one would be telling you you’re overreacting. It’s a common trope in mental health to diminish the feelings or experience of someone suffering from anxiety or panic because there’s no visible physical ailment and because there’s no discernible reason for the person to be having such a strong fear reaction.

The worst thing you can tell someone who is panicking is that they are overreacting.

Alternate suggestion: Treat a panic attack like any other medical emergency. Listen to what the person is telling you. Get them water if they need it. It helps me if someone rubs my back a little. If you’re in over your head, don’t hesitate to call 911 (or whatever the emergency services number is where you are). But please, take the person seriously. Mental health deserves the same respect as physical health.

CREDIT [X]  [X]

(via kasedd)

suicidalbreakd0wn:

whenpainmeetsdeath:

I wish at school they would talk about depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and self harm. Not just bullying. Because sometime it’s not people that make us feel like shit, it’s ourselves.

YES SOMEONE FUCKING SAID IT, YES.

(via dizzymisslizzi)

wootnerd:

snapdraws:

Apologies for the terrible image quality - I’m lacking scanner access at the minute so I had to take these photos on my phone

I was reading hyperbole and a half’s blog entry explaining their experience of depression and decided to make another sketchy comic based on my experiences with anxiety, which is another mental illness I think people tend to misunderstand quite frequently

Hopefully this will be of use to some people - whether they suffer from anxiety themselves or if they just want to know more about it

So very good! You need to publish a book. This reminds me of Matt Groening’s early work. This is fantastic!

(via webothlikeabe)

gwenlightened:

ineedathneed:

watamato:

been feeling kind of paranoid lately

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Take that time by yourself to get to know yourself and rediscover what makes you shine. Don’t surrender yourself to waiting, and don’t stay isolated for too long, because there’s a beautiful you the world is dying to meet. 

comics that end sadly but wind up being replied to with love are what I live for

(via wherelifeisjustducky)

tinadayton:

I would just like to say fuck you to everyone who made me feel inadequate growing up and ruining my self esteem for years. You all suck and I’m glad I don’t talk to any of you any more. 

(via simplyy-alice)

Anonymous asked: I've read some of your posts before and I was wondering if you could give me some advice. I'm in high school and recently my anxiety has gotten way worse. It's never been like this and I'm wondering if you have advice on how to deal with it? Just thinking about going back to school makes me sick.

victorian-porcelain-doll:

I totally understand how you feel! I am no expert on anxiety or anxiety disorders, but here’s some things that I’ve learned/things that have helped me:

1. Stay away from drinks with caffeine and alcohol, as well as tobacco products and drugs. All of these can make anxiety worse and trigger anxiety attacks. 

2. If anxiety disturbs your sleeping patterns, try taking one dose of melatonin at night an hour before bed. Your brain produces it on it’s own anyway, this just gives you an extra boost of it. It’s all natural and non-addictive. Valerian root is also a good herbal relaxer as well. 

3. Drinking herbal tea is a great way to relax. Try ones like chamomile, lavender, vanilla, and peppermint.

4. When you’re feeling really anxious, do something that involves your full concentration. People with anxiety tend to get easily distracted. Try reading a book, writing, drawing, painting, etc. By doing something where you need to be focus, your mind tends to wander less into anxious thoughts.

5. Try this breathing exercise once a day. Without changing the rhythm of your breath, close your eyes and keep breathing. Just focus on the feeling and sensation of breathing. If your focus shifts into the other feelings and sounds around you or other thoughts, slowly pull yourself back to thinking about breathing. Imagine inhaling positive energy and exhaling negative energy (sometimes this helps if you imagine it in colors: breath in white, breath out black). The more you do this, the more you become relaxed and focuses.

6. Make a list of things that make you anxious in order of least anxiety causing to most anxiety causing and bracket them in groups of degree of anxiety (mild, moderate, severe). Star the ones that could easily be done on a day to day basis. (For example, if taking a test or going to the doctors make you anxious, don’t star those because those are special circumstances. Star something like driving or making eye contact because those you can do on your own any day.) Pick one from the mild or moderate category each day and try it out. Keep a journal of what you were thinking and physically feeling and why you were thinking or feeling that way. Put check marks next to the ones you did and do different ones the next week. Seeing the check marks will give you a sense of pride and accomplishment and boost your confidence. Also, you can’t get over your fears if you don’t ever face them. When an opportunity comes up to do the ones you couldn’t, take it. Don’t do the ones you labeled as severe until you really honestly think you’re ready. 

7. After doing the breathing exercise above for a few minutes, imagine yourself in a situation that causes you anxiety. Imagine yourself doing a thing that makes you anxious but imagine it in a way where things are going fine. If you start to physically feel anxious, “pause” the scene and go back to the breathing exercise. Go back to the scene and pick up where you left off, still imagining the scene as being a positive experience. “Pause” and go back to the scene as many times as needed. When the scene is finished, do the breathing exercise for a few minutes to fully focus and calm down. Do this once a day too. 

8. If you’re having an anxiety attack, remove yourself from the situation and find a quiet and comfortable place to wait for it to pass. Take a friend your trust if you need to. Support can be very helpful in waiting for it to pass. While you wait for the anxiety attack to pass, close your eyes and take long, deep breaths: inhale for six counts, hold for seven counts, exhale for eight counts. 

9. Exercise daily. It helps burn off that jittery feeling. And eat healthy. A healthy body equals a healthy mind. 

10. Talking to someone about your thoughts and feelings helps because bottling them up can make you even more anxious. Go to a friend or family member you trust, or even a psychologist who specializes in psychotherapy. My ask box is always open if you need it!

*I hope this helps a little bit!!