My best friend says she gets anxiety when I don't respond to her messages fast enough

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Anonymous #1
#1
Report Thread starter 4 months ago
#1
We have been very good friends since 4-5 years now. We speak on a daily basis and we share everything. Both of us early 20s. Currently living far away from each other since we are studying at Unis, but we meet in person when we go back to our hometowns once in a while.

She is on the phone a lot more than me however so she responds faster most of the time. I always respond too, maybe a bit late occasionally, but it rarely happens.

And whenever I do respond a tad late it bothers her a lot. She sometimes deletes voice messages that she has sent and I haven't read yet, and yesterday she said she gets insecure when I give her a late response? And by late I mean even 3 hours is late for her. She has mentioned in the past aswell a few times.

What should I do? I don't know why it bothers her as much but honestly it gives unnecessary pressure to me. It's been happening for a while now.
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Cote1
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#2
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#2
Tell her she is your very best friend and her friendship is really important to you but if you reply late it is because you are busy and not that you don't care.
Ignore the pressure but continue with the friendship. Ignore any digs like deleting messages etc. You have done nothing wrong so let it wash over you.
She has to accept it can't all be her way.
Friendship works both ways
Last edited by Cote1; 4 months ago
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SomeWelshGuy123
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#3
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#3
"Unnecessary pressure for you" It's quite sickening that you think a mental health issue (which is indeed what this is, I have the same problem) is pressure for you. If a friend doesnt respond quickly people like your friend wreck their brains thinking what they've done to upset you, if you're no longer friends etc.
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HollyGranger03
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#4
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#4
(Original post by SomeWelshGuy123)
"Unnecessary pressure for you" It's quite sickening that you think a mental health issue (which is indeed what this is, I have the same problem) is pressure for you. If a friend doesnt respond quickly people like your friend wreck their brains thinking what they've done to upset you, if you're no longer friends etc.
OP hasn't done anything wrong, they aren't to blame. It is absolutely unnecessary pressure. OP's friend's mindset is the problem, expecting 24/7 contact. Sounds like a social media/tech related addiction to expect friends to be plugged in and online all of the time like this which is sickeningly becoming more common. OP's friend needs to spend sometime away from their phone to try and deal with this.
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StriderHort
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#5
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#5
(Original post by SomeWelshGuy123)
"Unnecessary pressure for you" It's quite sickening that you think a mental health issue (which is indeed what this is, I have the same problem) is pressure for you. If a friend doesnt respond quickly people like your friend wreck their brains thinking what they've done to upset you, if you're no longer friends etc.
In fairness, I absolutely think these things work both ways, such social demands can cause people distress for their own reasons so It feels a bit harsh bordering on hypocritical to call someone's behaviour sickening on such sparse information surely?
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skylark2
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#6
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#6
I would tell her you get anxiety if you feel you have to respond to messages within a couple of hours.

Absolutely mental health problems are a real thing, but a huge number of people use it as a trump card to make completely unreasonable demands. "I want you to always answer me within a couple of hours" is a completely unreasonable demand.
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Callicious
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#7
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(Original post by SomeWelshGuy123)
"Unnecessary pressure for you" It's quite sickening that you think a mental health issue (which is indeed what this is, I have the same problem) is pressure for you. If a friend doesnt respond quickly people like your friend wreck their brains thinking what they've done to upset you, if you're no longer friends etc.
I find it fun that people instantly assume that mental health problems are a one way street and instantly victimise whoever has them.

If my anxieties and depression actively crippled someone else and they complain about it, there's nothing wrong with that. They're not obligated to deal with my problems and do not have some social responsibility to do so.

Calling someones attitude 'sickening' because they're feeling stressed by someone else's mental health (which is clearly impacting them) and want to reduce that stress isn't alright, mate.
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Anonymous #2
#8
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#8
(Original post by Anonymous)
We have been very good friends since 4-5 years now. We speak on a daily basis and we share everything. Both of us early 20s. Currently living far away from each other since we are studying at Unis, but we meet in person when we go back to our hometowns once in a while.

She is on the phone a lot more than me however so she responds faster most of the time. I always respond too, maybe a bit late occasionally, but it rarely happens.

And whenever I do respond a tad late it bothers her a lot. She sometimes deletes voice messages that she has sent and I haven't read yet, and yesterday she said she gets insecure when I give her a late response? And by late I mean even 3 hours is late for her. She has mentioned in the past aswell a few times.

What should I do? I don't know why it bothers her as much but honestly it gives unnecessary pressure to me. It's been happening for a while now.
You’re not in the wrong but just probably unaware, your friend very likely suffers from serious anxiety disorder, this is one of its common symptoms. I speak to and see my close university friends nearly every day (I’m early 20s aswell) and as someone who suffers from anxiety I do the same.

From the perspective of someone on the other end, it’s weird. The moment my best friends don’t answer my FaceTime call I immediately rationalise that ppl who have spent so much time and money on me and constantly tell me they love me, somehow secretly don’t like me. It sounds silly even as I write it down but I can’t help it.
However, I will tell you what helps, words of affirmation! All your friend needs is just to be told plainly “i love and appreciate you and our friendship and u mean a lot to me”. This is why I’ve never had to bother my friends with my anxiety. Every-time i go down that rabbit hole after some time i snap and go “ah, no, x has told me countless times how much they enjoy me and my company so I’m just tripping” and when next we speak it’s more or less confirmed. They were just busy 🤷🏽*♂️

They didn’t suddenly start magically answering all my calls and texts after i told them how i feel because sometimes they have their own lives and things to do and nobody owns anyone, and i had to accept this. However, because they are my good friends and love me they already do answer majority of the time which is all i need. So set your boundaries, and use words of affirmation.


TLR — just give your friend plenty of words of affirmation, it’s an honest and easy fix
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Cote1
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#9
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#9
(Original post by SomeWelshGuy123)
"Unnecessary pressure for you" It's quite sickening that you think a mental health issue (which is indeed what this is, I have the same problem) is pressure for you. If a friend doesnt respond quickly people like your friend wreck their brains thinking what they've done to upset you, if you're no longer friends etc.
I don't think an accurate diagnosis can be made based on the information provided. The word 'sickening' is a bit harsh. I understand that some people may get anxious when they don't get a quick response or wonder why they have not had a reply within their expected timescale but that does not necessarily mean that they have a mental health issue. OP is allowed to feel pressured.
Last edited by Cote1; 4 months ago
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Cote1
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#10
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#10
(Original post by Anonymous)
You’re not in the wrong but just probably unaware, your friend very likely suffers from serious anxiety disorder, this is one of its common symptoms. I speak to and see my close university friends nearly every day (I’m early 20s aswell) and as someone who suffers from anxiety I do the same.

From the perspective of someone on the other end, it’s weird. The moment my best friends don’t answer my FaceTime call I immediately rationalise that ppl who have spent so much time and money on me and constantly tell me they love me, somehow secretly don’t like me. It sounds silly even as I write it down but I can’t help it.
However, I will tell you what helps, words of affirmation! All your friend needs is just to be told plainly “i love and appreciate you and our friendship and u mean a lot to me”. This is why I’ve never had to bother my friends with my anxiety. Every-time i go down that rabbit hole after some time i snap and go “ah, no, x has told me countless times how much they enjoy me and my company so I’m just tripping” and when next we speak it’s more or less confirmed. They were just busy 🤷🏽*♂️

They didn’t suddenly start magically answering all my calls and texts after i told them how i feel because sometimes they have their own lives and things to do and nobody owns anyone, and i had to accept this. However, because they are my good friends and love me they already do answer majority of the time which is all i need. So set your boundaries, and use words of affirmation.


TLR — just give your friend plenty of words of affirmation, it’s an honest and easy fix
It may not be the case that she very likely suffers from a serious anxiety disorder. There is not enough information to say this. However, positive affirmation may help the friend to feel reassured as it helped you.
Last edited by Cote1; 4 months ago
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gjd800
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#11
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#11
(Original post by SomeWelshGuy123)
"Unnecessary pressure for you" It's quite sickening that you think a mental health issue (which is indeed what this is, I have the same problem) is pressure for you. If a friend doesnt respond quickly people like your friend wreck their brains thinking what they've done to upset you, if you're no longer friends etc.
'sickening' haha, behave

Cote1is right. Just explain to them.

otherwise, it's a them problem, ot a you problem - and I am aware of how callous that sounds.
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