Are You Stressed Or Is It Your Partner
You and/or your partner may be suffering from stress from external sources. Ultimately, you are each responsible for your own recovery.
If you blame your partner, other people or the situation, you can get trapped in feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. This is unhealthy as you end up wasting precious energy on things you have no control over, instead of focusing on the things you can control.
Be More Active In Eating Healthy
One of the first things that we neglect when we are stressed is our eating habits. We might save some time to dedicate to solving the problem by grabbing a bite out or getting some fast food.
You can be there for your partner by making sure you both can have something healthy to eat or snack on at home. It will boost your energy and make you feel good because you are doing something healthy for yourself.
Keep Your Own Needs Fulfilled
If you want to be there for your partner long-term, you need to make sure you are taking care of yourself.
Who do you reach out to when they are distressed and cant be there for you? How do you provide for yourself? Do you have your own list of engaging and relaxing activities to keep you from feeling drained?
Answers to these questions can help you support your spouse in both the short and long term.
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Shower Them With Love
When you feel like there is nothing you can or offer to a stressed wife or husband, remember the power of love. Encouraging words for someone who is stressed can get you a part of the way, but physical intimacy will get you the rest of it.
You are never helpless because you can always hug them and be there for them. Stay present, and the weight of what they are feeling will decrease.
How Introverts And Extroverts Deal Differently With Stress
An introvert is more likely to be soothed by peace and quiet, and solitary activities.
An extrovert is more likely to cope by engaging in lively activities.
You are each on a continuum between introvert and extrovert. Try to work towards a balance to avoid the risk of becoming polarised as that will certainly increase relationship stress.
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Common Internal Ptsd Triggers
- Physical discomfort, such as hunger, thirst, fatigue, sickness, and sexual frustration.
- Any bodily sensation that recalls the trauma, including pain, old wounds and scars, or a similar injury.
- Strong emotions, especially feeling helpless, out of control, or trapped.
- Feelings toward family members, including mixed feelings of love, vulnerability, and resentment.
Tip : Stay Connected Through Communication
Good communication is a fundamental part of a healthy relationship. When you experience a positive emotional connection with your partner, you feel safe and happy. When people stop communicating well, they stop relating well, and times of change or stress can really bring out the disconnect. It may sound simplistic, but as long as you are communicating, you can usually work through whatever problems youre facing.
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If Youre Feeling Stressed Or Anxious
Youre far from alone, if the global pandemic has triggered some stress. Many people around the world currently live with fear and anxiety, and your partner probably numbers among them, too.
Bottling up feelings of stress and anxiety can make them worse. Other coping strategies, like drinking a lot of alcohol or watching show after show on Netflix, may not help much either.
But a team approach can help. Commit to sharing feelings with each other by talking about emotions as they come up or making a point to check in once a day.
If youve been together for some time, you can probably read each others moods fairly well. If they seem a little on edge, try suggesting a distracting activity or something that offers a tone shift.
Whether theyve contributed to your stress or not, keep in mind its not a bad thing to want time apart.
Try spending time separately doing something relaxing like listening to music, reading in the bathtub, or taking a long walk. This can help you feel better and distract you from triggers before they become overwhelming.
Lets Burn Your Problems Seriously
To get unstuck, we often need a healthy distraction, says Dr. Tobin. We need a break from the unproductive obsessions that accompany being overwhelmed and stuck. That said, he suggests that you burning your partners problems is a positively jarring proposal theyll never expect. Ask your partner to write down whats stressing them out and then physically burn the piece of paper. Because we need to help each other stay healthy, we have to be ready to try anything and everything that might do the trick.
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Tips For Dealing With Relationship Stress
Its easy to let financial stress broil, parenting pressures mount, or fall into old argument patterns especially if the two of you are locked together in close quarters.
Making time to go outside your house will help break you out of patterns and allow both of you to feel like youve escaped the usual.
How To Support Your Partner When They’re Dealing With Stress According To An Expert
If you’re anything like me, you’ve experienced stress at some point in your life. If you’ve been in a relationship, maybe your partner has gone through a stressful period too. Many things can help with stress, including yoga and essential oils , but the support of a partner in times of stress can often be critical. Everyone has different tools to cope with stress, but providing support for someone on their path to stress-relief is extremely helpful. To find out how to support your partner when they’re dealing with stress, I spoke to an expert to give you everything you need to know.
Making your partner feel seen can help alleviate anxiety, so let them know you’re aware of their stress. “Acknowledge the situation,” relationship expert tells Elite Daily. “Let your partner know that you understand that they are under a lot of stress, and invite them to tell you what they need during this time.” Your partner may or may not be ready to talk about their stress, but knowing that someone is there for them can be helpful. “Bring up a blanket offer of help,” Masini says. “‘Hey, are you OK?’ or, ‘Whatâs going on?’ Something simple like that may be what your partner needs to get a conversation going.” Once your partner knows that you’re there to listen, they might be willing to open up and talk about the problem.
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Ways To Help Your Relationships At Home Find The Positive
Stress, fear and anxiety are the largest factors affecting our mental health and relationships in 2020. Finding moments of gratitude and positive distractions help find balance in our daily lives.
According to Joanna Stagg, a Clinical Psychologist from Kaiser Permanente, Weve changed our entire landscape of our lives to different degrees and are trying to renegotiate our relationships with our partners and families during this pandemic.
Making Space and Creating a Time to Check-In
The changes that we face with children home from school, work and our daily responsibilities affect the way we communicate with our partner. Stagg recommends carving out special time during the week to be with one another. Ask direct questions, actively listen to your partner and understand what they are saying. Help to lessen stressful times by talking about solutions. Be vulnerable with your partner so they are open to sharing what they are feeling. Take more time, than you normally would, to check -in, said Stagg.
Time with each other can extend beyond a once-a-week activity. Simple things like taking a daily walk, gardening or exercising together are positive ways to connect. Time together every week helps lower anxiety and stress levels. It deepens your relationships and creates a positive outlet for yourself and your partner.
Focusing on Self-Care and Gratitude
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Building A Healthy Relationship
All romantic relationships go through ups and downs and they all take work, commitment, and a willingness to adapt and change with your partner. But whether your relationship is just starting out or youve been together for years, there are steps you can take to build a healthy relationship. Even if youve experienced a lot of failed relationships in the past or have struggled before to rekindle the fires of romance in your current relationship, you can find ways to stay connected, find fulfillment, and enjoy lasting happiness.
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Tell Me Whats On Your Mind
Stress clouds the mind and makes you feel alone. Its important to remind your partner that youve got their back by giving them license to scream, shout and let it all out, says Dr. Tobin. Right now your partner needs a friend, and youre stepping up to fill that need, he explains. Youre telling your partner that he/she can express anything freely and uninterrupted while all you do is listen. Through the acceptance, support, and kindness of the gesture, your partner will understand and appreciate how committed you are to the relationship.
Im Sorry Youre Under So Much Pressure Right Now
Whether its work, parenting, family troubles, or some other source of stress you dont even understand, a tiny text of empathy can go a long way. Genuine and compassionate words of support can be powerfully supportive, adds Trueblood. When you have a stressed partner whos verbally-oriented, they will truly appreciate reading your words of compassion, appreciation and understanding. Itll be right there in black and white for them to read and reread when they feel alone under pressure.
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Understand What Burnout Looks Like
Diminished boundaries in all areas of life, especially work, could lead to feelings of demoralization, burnout, and apathy, says Leela R. Magavi, M.D., a psychiatrist and regional medical director for Community Psychiatry. Magavi has worked with mothers who say theyve felt emotional and physical fatigue due to increased work hours and expectations, particularly amid the pandemic.
They say what hurts them most is when they feel like their efforts and hard work are not being appreciated by loved ones, Magavi says. This creates feelings of loneliness and helplessness.
Burnout manifests differently depending on the person, but people with burnout might be irritable and quick to anger, as Sells and his wife found. They might feel low commitment and a lack of interest in work, get frustrated quickly or feel emotionally numb, says psychiatrist Nereida Gonzalez-Berrios, MD. A burned out person might have physical symptoms such as headaches, stomach or muscle aches, higher blood pressure and might be less able to ward off infections due to a dampened immune system. Other signs include sadness, hopelessness and cynicism.
Its feeling like you have nothing more to give to the people around you, says licensed mental health counselor . Someone with burnout may say, I cant take anymore when what they really mean is, I cant give anymore. They dont just burn the candle at both ends, they have no candle left to burn.
Hence The Experts Saying That Stress Is Bad For Us
Stress is a normal and essential part of our being. It is a way of protecting us from threats. But, too much can be detrimental.
So, the question is, what can you do about it? And specifically today, what can you do for your spouse when they are under a tremendous amount of stress?
Here are some of the things I have learned about how to help your spouse thru stress.
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Offer To Give Them A Massage
There’s nothing more relaxing than getting a soothing, intimate massage â and offering to massage your partner is an especially romantic gesture on days when their stress levels are higher than usual.
“Give them a massage with some essential oils whilst playing relaxing music,” Hudson says. “This use of physical touch coupled with calming music is known as self-soothing, an act that signals to the brain that you are safe and commands the relaxation nervous system to be activated.”
Help Them Identify Their Triggers
Your independent observations of someone’s behaviour can help them identify patterns that they hadn’t noticed before.
This can be a sensitive topic, as it will mean drawing attention to negative thoughts or feelings, so remaining calm, objective and non-judgemental is important.
In the same way, you could also help someone identify situations and activities that help them to feel less stressed and more in control. For example getting outside for a walk, taking a relaxing bath or reading a book.
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Talking To Your Loved One About Ptsd Triggers
Ask your loved one about things theyve done in the past to respond to a trigger that seemed to help . Then come up with a joint game plan for how you will respond in future.
Decide with your loved one how you should respond when they have a nightmare, flashback, or panic attack. Having a plan in place will make the situation less scary for both of you. Youll also be in a much better position to help your loved one calm down.
How to help someone having a flashback or panic attack
During a flashback, people often feel a sense of disassociation, as if theyre detached from their own body. Anything you can do to ground them will help.
- Tell your loved one theyre having a flashback and that even though it feels real, the event is not actually happening again.
- Help remind them of their surroundings .
- Encourage them to take deep, slow breaths .
- Avoid sudden movements or anything that might startle them.
- Ask before you touch them. Touching or putting your arms around the person might make them feel trapped, which can lead to greater agitation and even violence.
Tip : Take Care Of Yourself
Letting your family members PTSD dominate your life while ignoring your own needs is a surefire recipe for burnout and may even lead to secondary traumatization. You can develop your own trauma symptoms from listening to trauma stories or being exposed to disturbing symptoms like flashbacks. The more depleted and overwhelmed you feel, the greater the risk is that youll become traumatized.
In order to have the strength to be there for your loved one over the long haul and lower your risk for secondary traumatization, you have to nurture and care for yourself.
Take care of your physical needs: get enough sleep, exercise regularly, eat properly, and look after any medical issues.
Cultivate your own support system. Lean on other family members, trusted friends, your own therapist or support group, or your faith community. Talking about your feelings and what youre going through can be very cathartic.
Make time for your own life. Dont give up friends, hobbies, or activities that make you happy. Its important to have things in your life that you look forward to.
Spread the responsibility. Ask other family members and friends for assistance so you can take a break. You may also want to seek out respite services in your community.
Set boundaries. Be realistic about what youre capable of giving. Know your limits, communicate them to your family member and others involved, and stick to them.
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Health Effects Of Relationship Stress
Did you know that relationship stress can actually make you sick? If youve moved from My relationship is stressing me out to feeling physical or mental health symptoms, thats a tell-tale sign that you have way too much stress in your relationship. Relationship stress can lead tomental health problems like:
- Anxiety when you are around your partner
- Overanalysis of your interactions
- Feeling depressed or withdrawn
- Problems sleeping
Studies have also proven that relationship stress can lead to physical health problems. One study even showed that ambivalent relationships where your interactions with your partner vary wildly from supportive to hostile areworse for your physical health than relationships that are entirely negative. Relationship stress results in the same negative health effects as any other form of stress:
- Stomach issues
- Increased risk of heart disease
- High blood pressure
- Weaker immune system
Its essential to ask yourself not only How does stress affect relationships? but also how stress affects your physical and mental well-being. It could mean a longer and healthier life for both you and your partner.
Become The Eye Of The Storm
In the middle of a hurricane, there is a place of quiet and calm. The eye. It is a place of respite amidst the chaos.
Visualize being the eye of the storm for your partner. Be a place of calm in the midst of their turmoil.
Be conscious of not allowing yourself to get sucked into the stress that your partner is going through. Remember, just because they are feeling it, doesnt mean you have to feel it too. If you are both out of control with stress, damage can ensue.
Instead, imagine being the eye and providing a place of relief from the chaos.
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