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AIBU to ask if anxiety was hereditary?

8 replies

Anxietea · 03/12/2019 18:32

I've had anxiety since childhood but never medicated.

I recently found out that my parents have anxiety too, but more in drips and drabs. They kept this from my all the time I was growing up and struggling.

DH and I have been TTC (unsuccessfully) for over a year now and I'm wondering if this is a sign and we should stop. If I got my mental health problems from my parents then surely I can just as easily pass it on to any DC I have?

I was thinking about this on my way home tonight and had an anxiety attack on the bus and had to get off.

OP posts:
Petrichor11 · 03/12/2019 18:40

My parents are both very anxious by nature, and both me and my sister have anxiety and other MH issues. My mum says her dad probably also had anxiety but being a man of his generation wouldn’t have sought help.

I think like most things it’s a combination of inheriting a predisposition and being raised by anxious parents that may make anxiety inherited. (I’m not an expert, just my family’s experience)

Weirdwonders · 03/12/2019 18:46

It runs in my family and I have it too. I used to think it was just to do with how I was raised but now I definitely think part of it’s hereditary. It’s playing a part in my considerations about whether to have children. I don’t know the answer.

purpleme12 · 03/12/2019 18:50

Personally I think mental health problems can be yes. I also think children absorb it all too subconsciously.

Pindlesandneedles · 03/12/2019 18:51

There’s some really interesting research into this and looking at how trauma/depression/anxiety might be inherited. However I also think that anxiety is incredibly common, there is good treatment available (although a postcode lottery with the NHS). I’m sure that with your experiences you’ll have learnt so much and have a huge amount of wisdom and guidance to pass on. There’s no such thing as a perfect parent (and indeed being perfect might be bad for your kids). So what I’m trying to say is that if you’re anxiety is affecting you now try and get the support you need. If you want children then have them, and use your experiences to teach them, to love them and to help them love themselves. There will always be a huge aspect of nurture that feeds into how our genetics and epigentics end up expressed in our personality. Flowers

ysmaem · 03/12/2019 18:53

Yes it can run in families.

Trustyourinnersatnav · 03/12/2019 18:55

I think they can be passed down too. I however didn't meet my biological father until recently. He does not suffer with anxiety or depression. Nor does my mother but the man (who I thought was my biological father, until I was told the truth) who brought me up suffers very badly with anxiety. So in my case I feel I subconsciously picked it up as a child.

DeathByPicolax · 03/12/2019 18:57

Both my parents were worrying types. Mum had full on MH issues. I am anxious and I didn't have DC because I was sure I would pass it on. Both my sibs have kids and I think it has all definitely been passed on genetically if I'm honest.

Ohyesiam · 03/12/2019 18:58

I would say it has a genetic element.

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