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Understanding the Pandemic as a Trauma
Melissa and I agreed immediately as we started talking about it – we are over. the. pandemic.
Overall, people are feeling exhausted and ready to move on to “regular life.”
“It has changed and impacted all of our lives in so many ways – from the way that we work, the way that we go to school and the way that we interact or don’t interact with people,” Melissa said.
Melissa shared on the Happiness in Progress podcast that it’s important to understand this event as a trauma. She says by understanding this – we can realize we are all in this together.
“We’re all in this together, meaning that we are all in a traumatic experience together,” she said. With this understanding, we can also started to realize that we are being impacted differently.
It will also remind us to be gentle with ourselves and with others.
For immediate action ideas to deal with this trauma click here to listen to the full podcast.
The Quarantine’s Impact on Relationships
For the most part, most people don’t spend all day, every day with their significant other. The pandemic has changed that for many people – with more people working from home, homeschooling from home and doing just about everything from home.
Melissa points out that this means people are not getting the downtime they used to – whether that was drive time, being home alone or at the gym.
“So many of our needs that were being met before that maybe we didn’t realize were being met” are not being met now.
This can raise tensions in a household.
Identify What You Need
The first step is to figure out what you need. Melissa advises to figure out what it is that you are missing that was filling your needs before.
That could be anything from exercise time to alone time.
Once you’ve identified it – you’re ready to talk to your spouse.
“This is going to be an opportunity in your relationship where you’re renegotiating about how you run your household, renegotiating about what you do in your relationship and what the other person does and that means a change,” Melissa said as she points out this may likely have to be an intentional conversation with your partner.
Be open and honest – tips on how to start this conversation are included in the conversation – don’t miss the whole thing here!
“When You first said your ‘I dos’ you were not under the impression you would be parenting through a pandemic”
I wanted to ask Melissa about how couples who are parenting may be facing some tough conversations when they don’t necessarily have the same beliefs about the pandemic.
She pointed out – a lot of people may be reevaluating what our beliefs are, particularly what they are as we deal with a pandemic.
For instance – maybe one of you believe we should keep the kids at home, the other wants to send the kids to school. Those are two very different beliefs.
Melissa said it’s very important to be open about what beliefs you have and what fears you have.
“It may be an unhelpful thought or a thought that’s not true, but by sharing it and talking openly about it with the other person that helps you disseminate what it is exactly and what the roots are – and leads to understanding.”
More on the Podcast
- How to come to a compromise
- Coming up with ‘I feel’ statements
- Supporting the whole of your family and yourself
- How to validate one another
- What if you don’t know how you feel
- Tips on being open and honest with your partner
- Immediate action to take to feel better during this pandemic
If you liked this episode:
- check out this episode about how to improve the communication in your relationship
- learn how to thrive in the face of the unknown
You can listen to this full episode by clicking on the play button on the top or the Youtube video. You can also find it anywhere you listen to podcasts including on Stitcher, Libsyn, Apple Podcasts, Youtube, Mail Tribune – and you can even ask Siri or Alexa to ‘play the happiness in progress podcast.’