I have panic disorder, I’ve had it since I was 17 years old. However I can say that it’s gotten less intense since I became single. I used to have them every night and fear for my life. If you’ve read my book, I talk about this in more detail. But right now I’m going to talk to you about things you should NEVER say to someone with Panic Disorder and why you should never say those things. Some of these things I’ve had said to me over the years. And they didn’t help at all, in fact they made me feel worse.
#1. Just calm down- That doesn’t help because it makes the person feel like they can control their symptoms and they can’t. They can’t help it! It’s not our fault. so telling us to calm down is downplaying what is happening. You may think it’s helping but it’s actually making us more self conscious of what is happening and feel worse.
#2. It’s all in your head: That makes us feel crazy, Don’t say that.
#3. You’re overreacting: This makes it harder for us to calm down. Don’t say this. It makes us feel horrible and like what is happening is our fault. which again it’s not.
#4 you have no reason to be nervous: This would actually increase our anxiety. Because you’re reinforcing it. Just don’t do it.
What you can do instead: First you can be nice and understanding. Second you can educate yourself on mental health and help lessen the stigma surrounding it. Third: Encourage us and tell us that you’re here and that you’re not going anywhere. https://www.verywellmind.com/what-not-to-say-to-someone-having-a-panic-attack-2584266