I’ve wanted to talk for So Long about the portrayal of anxiety in YOI but I’ve been having so much trouble putting together what I want to say in the most effective manner. I kept trying to come at this in a more analytical fashion, but considering that this is such a personally important topic to me, I’m going to try a more emotional approach. Something I don’t normally do.
So really, to start off, I wanna say that I’m so damn thankful for the way Yuuri is written. Really, seriously. I don’t think I’ve ever had the ability to relate more to character; Yuuri is close to a mirror of my own experiences with anxiety and it’s so fantastic to have a model of development and growth for me and people like me. I found the portrayal to be frighteningly accurate, from types of thoughts, behaviors, mannerisms… I think the episode that stood out to me the most in terms of Yuuri’s anxiety was ep7, aka Yuuri’s on-screen panic attack episode.
The first thing I noticed was this:
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve found myself in that exact position. I bounce my legs when I panic, just like Yuuri is doing here. Head in his hands, breathing heavily, bouncing and jostling limbs. This isn’t the Mary-Sue cutesy portrayal of anxiety–this is a real anxiety disorder. It’s not pretty. It’s not easy. It can’t be fixed with a single word or a touch or a person. Quite frankly, it’s ugly and you lose control of your body.