Alexandra Miller, a 30-year-old Brooklynite, would be hard-pressed to talk about her mental health struggles over the past few years without talking about the stresses of living in New York. That distinct sense of dread she’s felt around commuting, for instance? That started to set in after she got into a bike accident in Park Slope in 2014.
“The feeling of having something so sudden happen on the road made me feel like that type of accident could happen at any time,” Miller said. “I just noticed I was becoming more and more irrationally anxious.”
Keeping up with the high cost of living in New York while pursuing her passions has also been a source of anxiety. At one point, Miller was working two part-time jobs—one as an editorial assistant at a food blog and another as a graphic designer and marketing manager at a nonprofit—and would often become overwhelmed by the feeling of perpetually treading water to stay afloat. She would sometimes rush out of the subway well before her stop because she felt like she needed to come up for air.
“I started to fear something going terribly wrong on my way to work,” Miller said. “I would get panic attacks on the subway, and I definitely was not able to keep taking cabs.”
I feel much better since I gave up hope.
"If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there’d be peace." – John Lennon