I just launched my website this late March in the midst of a shelter in place for Illinois.
Thank you to all of you that are practicing social distancing during these uncertain times and putting the well being of others ahead of your desire to go about as usual. I understand that this is hard, so hard that some people are refusing to do so and acting out in dangerous ways.
There are many ways that social isolation and the realities of a pandemic maybe effecting you.
For many of us being shut in is stressful. Your daily routine that your job provided you with, the people you saw at work, the time spent outside going from your home to your job, and social gatherings you used to attend have been stripped away.
Even if you already worked from home it can still be stressful since the reason for being home is still different. Your routine can very well be still interrupted since you can no longer take that daily jaunt to the coffee shop or to the gym. Your social gatherings are all canceled. You may be used to being at home but not being able to leave your home is not normal and doesn’t feel normal.
Even If you are going out for regular walks social distancing by yourself, you may very well still feel a loss without in person, human contact.
What you see through the news and stories that are being disseminated is scary.
So much of what made your day normal has all been stripped away.
If you are shut in with your family or roommates you might be struggling with getting time to yourself and tension running high could have very well led to fights, causing even more tension. If you are in an apartment as opposed to a house you lack a yard to walk in and have even less space to exist in.
If you are in an abusive home situation, things could be worse for you right now.
This isn’t easy and while the government is trying to figure out how the nation will recover you are all fighting the fight to make it day by day, that is honorable. It is worthwhile and I am grateful to every one of you that is making the effort to stay home even though it is difficult, uncomfortable, and may be exacerbating other mental health issues you already cope with. Your efforts make a difference even though it may not feel that way at the moment.
It makes sense that you feel worried for yourself and your loved one’s safety. It makes sense that you feel like you’re struggling to not give into depression. It makes sense that it is hard it is to get up when you miss your friends and family. It makes sense that your trying your hardest to hold it together while taking care of your children. It makes sense that you worry if you will be the next person to get furloughed or laid off. It makes sense that your worrying because you were furloughed or laid off. It makes sense that this hard. You aren’t sitting at home on vacation. You are sacrificing your autonomy for others.
I want to provide something for those you that are struggling right now. Even if you are seeing someone for help, I hope that these posts might help you. For the foreseeable future I am going to do what I can to focus this blog on mental health concerns, coping skills, and resources that will be particularly helpful during this trying time.