HELPING YOUR TEEN DURING THE CORONA VIRUS PANDEMIC

Everyone is affected by the world pandemic we have endured for a year now. Daily life has been severely impacted on so many levels some days it can feel like there is nothing to do but sit down and stare at the wall. The bills are due, the job is gone, responsible people have practiced social distancing, wearing a mask, and staying home as much as possible meaning no bars, no social events, no sporting events, extreme stress and high anxiety. Congratulations if you and your partner have figured out how to be together doing fun activities and chores without sniping or outright arguing. Generally, that requires agreed upon alone time that you use to go into a room where you are alone, and read, paint, meditate, work on crafts, do something on the computer other than work or porn or pretending you’re single and cruising dating sites. You can do anything, research, read all kinds of interesting articles, catch up on social media, send emails to friends or chat with a friend or friends from the privacy of your alone time. It’s even more important at this time to maintain social and familial connections than before the pandemic began....

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THE NATION IS GRIEVING

I happened to see Deepak Chopra on a news show this morning. He was bring interviewed about COVID and said that he believes the nation is grieving. So startled, I stopped walking to listen to the rest of what he had to say about that. I know about grief and grieving, have had my fair share, but it never occurred to me that the nation is grieving. I thought, dissolving, having a collective nervous breakdown, using violence as a coping mechanism, and being submissive trying to survive fear itself, but not grieving. Yes, I thought, that’s right, the nation is grieving. It is going through all of the stages of grief, denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. In other dire situations, the stages of grief aren’t linear, and they can overlap. The nation is grieving for itself, no matter what you believe, no one is getting what they want, no one. Before I saw that news clip, I was going to write about despair, and how difficult it is and has been these past months, how in the beginning, we thought it would be over maybe not sooner but for sure later. No one could imagine being quarantined for six...

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ANXIETY IN THE AGE OF CORONAVIRUS

On December 10, 2009, the CDC reported an estimated 50 million Americans or 1 in 6 people had been infected with the 2009 A H1N1 Virus, and 10,000 Americans had died, by which time the vaccine was beginning to be widely distributed to the general public by several states. H1N1, also called the Swine flu, was the last time the world had a pandemic. It began in the spring of 2009. Today we have a vaccination to help protect us against H1N1. Maybe you're wondering why I'm talking about the Swine flu when I'm supposed to be writing about the Coronavirus. I am because, at the time of the Swine flu, I purchased one box of Tamiflu for every member of my family. I was so anxious I felt like I was crawling out of my skin. I alternated between planning my funeral (bad) or one of my children or grandchildren's funerals (much worse). The tab for Tamiflu for all was considerably higher than a luxurious weekend at a ski resort. I didn't care. I couldn't bear the thought of losing a loved one. Never mind that, had anyone developed the Swine flu, their doctor would have prescribed Tamiflu for...

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EARLY CHILDHOOD TRAUMA

This is an important video explaining what happens to developing brains that are traumatized, and gives us a better understanding of childhood trauma, and why talk therapy in adulthood and childhood, for as long as it takes to help the client heal, is the best course of treatment. Without healing, the damage creating unhealthy responses in children continues into adulthood, and can severely impact adult relationships. It's the story that needs to be told and heard with caring and empathy. .https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jYyEEMlMMb0&feature=youtu.be

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WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DON’T KNOW YOURSELF

Very often you look to others, your friends, family, coworkers to see how you’re doing. Are you good enough? Do you fit in? Are you going to continue to rise up whatever ladder you’re looking at, professional or personal? You’re born like a plant seeking the light. If the plant is placed in a dark corner it will twist itself to try to grow toward the light. If a person, from a very early age, realizes what gets them love and attention, they will repeat those attitudes, beliefs, what they say or do, to continue getting love from others. However, you were already born a person, and maybe your family of origin doesn’t understand that. Perhaps they believe it’s their job to turn you into a person, not to be curious about who you are and to guide you into adulthood and independence as yourself, who you were when you were born. You begin wearing a mask you believe is you. The problem is that you have to keep changing masks depending on the other people you’re around and what expectations they have of you. Since you haven’t internalized a solid sense of self that allows you to put on...

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