Family Estrangement and the impact of the Corona Virus

I was hesitant to record any video about the corona virus as there is so many people putting out opinions and I personally think there is too much noise and not enough hard facts around the situation. so I didn’t really want to add to this.

However, there’s been a few emails coming in and one post on the Facebook group how people are managing their estrangement around this time to so I figure maybe it worthwhile discussing it a bit.

What I find interesting about the crisis is how it’s either prompting or in some cases forcing people to reconnect with family, whether that is for good and for bad.

In some cases, it is bad from the onset. One person who emailed is forced to spend time with family due to closures here in Ireland and the family dynamic sounds very unhealthy. In these cases, it’s very triggering and incredibly stressful and people ask me direct questions about what they should do and it’s very difficult for me to offer advice because the situation is very delicate and the consequences are real…and while I encourage everyone to do what they need to do to be safe. Even if you can’t change the situation, maybe the best you can do is keep some mental distance from what’s happening, keep your mind on your goals, visualise, draw a vision board…use the time to paint a detailed picture of the life you hope to create for yourself.

In other examples, there is great uncertainty around if they should reach out to family as there is genuine concerns about the health of others. Despite the fears, you need to decide (based on your past experiences) if that is the right thing do and will safety be compromised. Even if you do reach out, it doesn’t necessarily mean they will respond positively (or they might not respond at all) so try to be clear with your intent beforehand…is it just check-in or is there hope for change in the situation?

But there are others, who have reached out to family and it is too early to tell how the situation will progress. And I do wonder if this strange time might prompt change. I’ve spoken before about successful reconciliations and how it is often the product of changes in status and circumstances…maybe this global crisis will cause a shift in values and encourage people to try to form a healthier relationship with family…but again it’s too early to tell.

But for now, keep prioritising looking after yourself…and my last point is this…and this is very important…practising self-care is not the same as being selfish and a healthy family knows the difference between the 2 and encourages self-care. And maybe that’s the marker you should use to decide on how to progress in very uncertain time?

Take care


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