When you live with a chronic fear of being abandoned, its really difficult when all of a sudden you can’t have the regular contact you would with the people you love and care deeply about.
Lockdown has been difficult and my anxiety has increased tenfold, to the point where I’m basically a ball of it.
But the most difficult thing for me during lockdown has been this fear of being abandoned.
“No one can see me so people are going to forget about me” is a prominent thought in my mind.
So I become clingy to my friends who I love and care about. Which instills more fear and a vicious cycle as I’m scared they’re going to leave me because of how clingy I am.
But I CAN’T stop. It’s like im watching myself do it, screaming at myself not to be going to these frantic efforts to avoid being abandoned, but being scared of it happening anyway.
Another aspect is ,we can’t see people at the moment, and i struggle with believing that people exist if I can’t physically see them. Sounds stupid doesn’t it ?
Have you ever heard of object constancy? Children learn, through games like peek-a-boo that just because they can’t see something doesnt mean its not there.
I sort of lack that skill, and as one of my best friends puts it, it’s like I’m constantly playing a game of friendship peekaboo. Because the minute I’m not in contact with them or can’t see them I begin to question their existence, this goes for everyone, not just my friends.
This is amplified by 100 when you can’t actually go a physically see and hug people.
For me physical human contact is the thing that makes me feel alive, feel less abandoned.
Logically I know people aren’t going to abandon me, the people who im most scared of leaving me would have done so a while ago if they were going to.
But logic plays no part in feelings, thoughts = facts as you naturally believe your thoughts. And then you go from there.
I can spiral into a pit of self-depreciating thoughts very quickly but as long as they just remain thoughts and I ignore them/ don’t do any behaviours because of that thought (eg. frantically call somone because I believe I’m being abandoned then it’s fine)
That’s easier said than done and it’s increasingly harder in these strange circumstances
But I know it’s not something only I am dealing with.
People are dealing with these strange times all different ways, some people aren’t really feeling its affects, some are denying. Some people are feeling like me. Others are finding it easier to just cut themselves off whilst this is going on.
There’s no correct way to handle how your feeling, the only real way is to do whatever is going to help you. Be selfish and help yourself feel okay (without trying to hurt other people).
People’s mental health is struggling at the moment whether you have a diagnosed condition or not.
I’m watching people with OCD struggle because this is way out of everyone’s control, especially their own.
I’m watching people with eating disorders struggle as they see people joke about “getting fat during lockdown”
I’m watching people with depression struggle to find a purpose as they can’t go to work or do the things that kept them going.
And people with BPD struggle with their impulsivity and fear of abandonment.
Everyone needs to support each other, if you don’t understand mental health just be kind.
We are all going through this together, just some people have additional factors that come into play too.
So much love to you all ❤️❤️❤️
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