Reducing anxiety around sex, relationships and intimacy

How to cope with Relationship anxiety

When a person starts to feel anxious about life with a current or prospective partner, it’s an understandable worry—this is a big part of their lives. However, in certain cases, this worry becomes so crippling, it can prevent the relationship from flourishing, or even taking off, to begin with.

Therapy can help to examining the causes of relationship anxiety, what to look out for, and the appropriate ways to navigate this feeling.

Usually, it’s the start of what could be a perfect relationship. The conversation is fantastic, communication is loud and clear both ways, and everything seems set for a happily ever after—except for one or two doubts you can’t seem to shake off.

‘What do they even see in me?’, ‘Will they get bored?’ ‘How long until this one falls apart?’ In some cases, these questions linger on even after ‘I love you’ have been exchanged in the relationship.

If you’ve ever found yourself asking these questions, there is a chance that you may be familiar with relationship anxiety. 

Different Ways Relationship Anxiety Presents Itself

Here are some ways to tell that anxiety is manifesting itself in your relationship:

  • Wondering if your partner truly has feelings for you
  • Looking for constant reassurance from your partner
  • Aiming to please your significant other at any cost, sometimes to your detriment
  • Acting controlling towards your partner’s movements or interactions
  • Consistently wanting to be around your partner and being clingy in most situations
  • Holding doubts about romantic compatibility 
  • Over-analysing simple words and actions for signs of trouble
  • Constantly feeling like your partner intends to call off the relationship
  • Spending more time worrying about the relationship than enjoying it.

In other cases, relationship anxiety may take the form of deliberately sabotaging things with your partner. This can be seen where slight issues are blown out of proportion or where traps are laid for your partner to test fidelity.

It may also appear in instances where you purposely stay aloof and guarded with your partner, all to steel yourself against hurt and pre-empt difficulties.

Constantly worrying about the relationship can affect the quality of love and intimacy you enjoy. In some cases, experiencing persistent feelings of anxiety within the relationship can produce the most feared result—an end to the union.

If you realise that you frequently experience relationship anxiety, this can negatively affect your well-being and the chances of experiencing a future with your partner.

What Is Sexual Anxiety?

Sexual anxiety can also be called sexual performance anxiety, and it can be caused by negative experiences from the past, sexual dysfunctions, stress, or a variety of other factors.

It can cause people to feel extreme anxiety and potentially even lead to sexual avoidance. That said, the most important factor to consider is the importance of communication.

It has even been found that communication is the secret to keeping passion alive in long-term relationships. Communication can not only make you more comfortable, but it can also help you identify the root of your sexual anxiety and help you work toward a more fulfilling sex life.

Attending Therapy

In certain situations, getting professional help to manage your anxiety may be the best option for getting it under control.

Through therapy, you can receive the proper guidance to change negative and dysfunctional thoughts about yourself, your self-worth, and your attitude towards your partner.

Therapy can also teach appropriate methods to manage your anxiety to prevent lasting damage to the relationship.