To My Dearest Readers..
A couple I was seeing last week, was sharing that in this stressful times of COVID-19 and the Corona virus epidemic, they were feeling the urgency to work on their relationship.. ‘If we are going be quarantined together’, they said.. ‘we better learn how to get along’….
Another couples say ‘we need a crash course in communication and on how to be supportive and relaying on/to each other’..
When our lives get disrupted in such a ‘never before’ way, our usual coping skills and strategies get tested and at times may not be as effective.
Sue Johnson, developer of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), has changed the way we understand the dance we called love, and the a structure and needs, behind our conflicts in relationships. We now understand that our negative communication patterns is a result of unmet needs in our attachment bond. We are fighting for connection and we protest our disconnection.
At times like these, with uncertainty, fear, social distancing and isolation, we need each other ever more acutely.
We have all been encouraged to ‘socially distance’ so we can reduce the spread of the Corona Virus. However, being alone is Interpreted in our mammalian brain as ‘Danger’, and Being Connected is Interpreted as ‘Safe’..
Though our mammalian DNA is coded for connection Most of us live in ‘a tribes of two’, (if we are lucky), many of us live alone. Isolation can lead to fear, loneliness, depression, decreased immune system, and lack of ability to find meaning.
During the devastating fire that destroyed Paradise, and adjoining areas, we saw how important the need for connection and the community to support each other, became so crucial. Secure Attachments Help with Stress in Times of Adversity. Here is my blog about Secure Attachment in times of adversity.
Michele Weiner-Davis, best selling author, a couples marriage therapist, and public speaker, writes: “Let’s remember that we’re all in this together. Let’s give each other get-out-of-jail-free passes when our responses to mundane matters seem a bit over the top. Let’s let the small things slide. Let’s use this down time to find new and creative ways to connect rather than blame each other.
“Let’s inoculate our marriages against fear, anxiety and uncertainty by making love our most important underlying condition.”
In these stressful time of this global epidemic, with all the unknowns we are facing, it becomes even more important to know we are not alone, and that we can rely on others.
Unfortunately, the stress, hurts our ability to cope, and compromise our immune system.
“The ability to fend off illness and disease depends on several factors, some of which are beyond our control, but the way we react to stress and the general health of our immune system are things we can influence. If we’re not able to change our response to stressors, we’ll find ourselves in a constant hormonal battle that will lead to serious health issues like hypertension, diabetes, and heart disease. The brain and the immune system are in constant communication in this delicate balance that can be disrupted by any kind of physical or emotional stress.”
My colleague Jonathan Robinson writes:
“If you’re feeling stressed lately, you’ve got plenty of company—even if you’re at home alone. (That’s an attempt at a little coronavirus humor). Anyway, according to the American Medical Association, 80 to 90% of disease is stress-related. That means that if you don’t want you or your loved ones to get sick, become better at handling your stress—since stress greatly lessens your immunity.”
We need each other to survive. Connection is in our strength. And though, we need to ‘social distance’, so we can help prevent and slow the virus spreading, we do not need to give up connection.
Reach out to family, colleagues, friends, and associates, reach out and connect in what ever format that is possible. We need to ‘Social distance’, and to keep safe, but we do not need ‘isolation’.
Let your heart lead, do not let fear and panic be your guides.
Here is a message I sent to my clients this week.
My dearest clients:
In response to current public health concerns regarding the spread of the COVID 19 virus, I am offering the option of telehealth therapy services (on-line sessions), to all of you.
Although for now, I am still seeing clients in my Nevada City office, I may need to transition to only tele-health therapy, (on line sessions) in the near future.
If you are having financial hardship to pay for therapy, please do not hesitate to connect with me, we can work it out.
Together we can weather this storm. Remember stress reduces our immunity.
I am committed to helping you reduce stress, and maintain secure connection.
Please take good care of yourselves and each other💕