Stuck in solitude

comfortingI’m the kind of person who sees someone upset and immediately experiences this overwhelming desire to help. I know this isn’t a bad quality to have, however, I never expected it to be so difficult. At this moment I feel useless. She needs me, and I feel completely useless.

My younger sister and I have never gotten along well. We used to fight all the time until we finally ceased communication all together. But now, she’s a sophomore in high school and things have changed. She’s changed. She’s always had this bad temper with others, but for the last several months she’s been isolating herself. Just hides away in her bedroom like she’s trying to survive the zombie apocalypse. I didn’t think much of it at first – just figured she needed time to relax. I was like that in high school too.

Then my parents began telling me about incidences where she would become dizzy and have fainting spells. These occurrences happened during church and choir concerts. It got so bad that she dropped out of her choir class. She talked to her school psychologist who told her she had anxiety. A couple months have gone by now since she quit choir and things have gotten better – until tonight.

I was at home working on a paper and received a text from mom saying my sister had a bad night at church and they were dropping her off at home. To emphasize the seriousness my dad told me that I should go talk to her. With slight hesitation I decided to see what was going on. I walked into her room and saw her on the edge of her bed with her head in her hands. I asked if she wanted to talk and when she declined, I insisted. She made a face that was trying to fight back tears. I sank into the mattress next to her and scratched her back as she sobbed.

I’d never seen anyone so defenseless and miserable. I attempted to find out what was going on. She kept repeating that she hated feeling this way. Every moment of everyday no matter where she was she felt anxious. It’s not just large crowds that trigger the anxiety. “Why do you think I’m always in my room?” Clearly, even at home, the closest people to her brought forth the anxious feelings.

I want to help her. You have no idea how desperately I want to help her. I know anxiety is a common issue in the majority of people. I just hate seeing her so lonely and scared. My heart breaks whenever I see anyone I care about looking vulnerable like a puppy in a rainstorm. She’s my sister – my only sister – and I need her to be okay.

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