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The pandemic has caused division among the general population and likely polarization among loved ones and people you’re close to. Coping with differing opinions in any situation is difficult, but with anxiety being so high and pervasive during the pandemic, the thought of discussing COVID-19 with people you’re close to may incite anger, fear and feel off-limits. Although it would be nice if we could avoid the topic altogether, this type of discussion is necessary especially if someone you’re close to is living life carelessly as if the pandemic didn’t exist or is super strict to the point of complete isolation for over a year.
So, how can we deal with disagreements about COVID-19? Something to keep in mind is that people have differing levels of comfort when it comes to risk-exposure. When dealing with people you care about, try to accept that their opinion may not get swayed no matter how hard you try. Also, keep in mind that people might negatively interpret your attempts to find common ground, which is inevitable when discussing polarizing topics. Once you accept these potential outcomes, then utilizing some of the following strategies will be [a little] easier to practice:
Living during a pandemic has been mentally challenging, but learning to set boundaries and finding ways to stay connected with loved ones during this difficult time are skills that will be useful even after the pandemic is over.
Vania Manipod, DO – Psychiatrist
Dr. Manipod is a guest writer for InCrowd. You can learn more about her on her website, Freud and Fashion, or on Instagram. Interested in joining InCrowd? Follow this link to join in less than a minute.
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