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What I mean when I say “I can’t do that”- Anxiety Version:

  • I am unable to do that
  • I am too stressed out to do that
  • I cannot face the humiliation of attempting to do that
  • My body will physically not allow me to do that
  • I am on the verge of a panic attack
  • I cannot do that

What people hear:

  • I am unwilling to do that
  • I am just shy
  • I am overreacting
  • I am lazy
  • I need to get more experience in social situation to help my anxiety
  • I need a push
  • I don’t want to do that

Inspired by X


"It was like they weren’t even there, you know. I saw their faces; I saw them as clear as the day, like I am talking to you (the interviewer). I saw their faces and their eyes were just kind of like if they weren’t there. You know, these boys just didn’t know what they were doing. And they were shouting at people, they were saying "this is the best day of my life", and you know, they were just kind of laughing bitterly and stuff. It was awful.

Eric shot his nose and he was like “oh man I shot my nose off”, and I looked up and I saw his face pretty clearly and his nose is all bloody and… they were just out of control. He was laughing. He didn’t say “oh it hurts, I need something”, it was just like “oh I shot my nose haha!”. It wasn’t like he even cared about it.”

- Heidi Johnson - Student at Columbine High School, who was in the library during the shootings.

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