Hello everyone! Today I have a very special post for you all, an interview with my absolute favorite friend, Rorrie. Rorrie is an undergrad student and also suffers from anxiety. We met in high school and it was like we instantly clicked. No awkward stage, just pure, honest-to-goodness friendship, which I think is a really rare thing to find. I honestly have no idea where I’d be in life if I had never met Rorrie because they have had such a positive impact on my life and I couldn’t have found a better friend in anyone else. Ok, enough of my sappiness, on with the interview!
Me: Do you suffer from anxiety? If so, what type of anxiety?
Rorrie: I do. Generalized anxiety and a little social anxiety.
Me: Do you feel like people treat you differently because you have anxiety?
Rorrie: Yeah a little. Sometimes I have to remove myself from situations if they become too much and that worries my friends a lot and they try to comfort me. But I don’t feel like I get much special treatment from my peers
Me: Are there certain situations that heighten your anxiety?
Rorrie: I get it when I get really stressed, say stupid things, and think about my past.
Me: Do you have any tips/coping mechanisms you use to lower your anxiety?
Rorrie: Music! Always music. I listen to music for hours each day. Being on campus can make me anxious but as long as I have my head phones I’m good. There’s this thing called Chill Anime Beats and you can find them on YouTube and help when things get pretty bad. They are basically a loop of a pretty beat. If all that fails, I talk to someone, often on the phone.
Me: Do you think there is a public stigma in society that hurts people with anxiety/mental illness?
Rorrie: Yeah. I think the common thoughts surrounding mental illness that results in “advice” like “it’s all in your head”, “get it together”, “just be happy” can not only be irritating but also pretty damaging too. There’s a fundamental misunderstanding among most people without mental illness.
Me: In what ways do you think we could work to reduce this stigma?
Rorrie: I think people who have a mental illness should talk about it more. I’m very upfront about my mental health and I think the more visible we make ourselves, the more people will realize that it’s not something smiling can fix and will create more empathy towards us.
I’d like to thank Rorrie for sharing their perspective and personal experience with us all! I hope that you all have found this interview to be helpful in some way. I personally agree with the idea that talking about it with others is the only way to help others understand anxiety/mental illness’. If we don’t speak up, how will we ever be heard? Please feel free to leave any comments for either me or Rorrie below and I will make sure they see them! Over and out my friends!