Toward the end of my first stint as a child psychologist, a high school classmate’s sister called during the ten-minute gap between patients. I took the call because I remembered her, and I was curious. It turned out to be one of those times my own thoughts came out of someone else’s mouth, which is why it’s stuck with me so long.
As I write this, the truth is that I am tired. The truth is also that I am having a lovely day. Yes, there have been some hard moments, but there have also been some beautiful moments. I am not failing today; I am living. It is not a bad day. It is a nuanced day.
When we are under high stress, it can be tempting to put off self-care. This can be especially true when our pre-covid routines have been so disrupted. But I hope that many of us have self-care activities that we have been able to keep, and perhaps have been able to find new ones. One of my favorites for myself and my clients is mindfulness, which is perhaps best practiced in isolation, and can be practiced almost anywhere and anytime we can find a few moments.
Since the pandemic started earlier this year, I’ve found myself in the interesting position of not only using theme hints to establish common language between myself and my individual clients, but in using the SAME themes across different clients in order to navigate what seem to be very common concerns among the majority, if not the entirety, of my caseload: coping with an increased sense of isolation, anxiety related to the uncertainty of the future, an increasing sense of powerlessness regarding one’s circumstances, and the mind-numbing sameness of the day-to-day in this “new normal.”
When I introduce myself as a sex therapist to other mental health providers and professionals in the medical field, I get a mixed bag of reactions. Some respond with enthusiastic curiosity about the strangest cases I’ve worked with in the past. More often; however, I encounter providers who give me a sideways glance and mutter an uneasy, “Oh, that’s interesting.”
In 2015, the American Psychological Association (APA) released a task-force technical report on video-game violence with a concurrent resolution statement linking violent games to aggression but not violent crime. The task-force report has proven to be controversial; many scholars have criticized language implying conclusive evidence linking violent games to aggression as well as technical concerns regarding the meta-analysis that formed the basis of the technical report and resolution statement.
Louisiana is a resilient community, but we work best when we work together. Southwest Louisiana is a community that prior to this storm was underserved in mental and behavioral health. I know that our public affairs committee will be meeting so that we can organize resources as we become aware of needs. From past experiences, we know that each disaster is unique and that it is often best to listen to impacted communities, allow them to express their needs first, then organize response with what is needed rather than making assumptions.
As you go about your days, please remember that self-care is integral to the provision of evidence-based practices of healthcare and psychology. When I say “take care,” I mean please take time to take care of yourself in these challenging circumstances. LPA is a resource to you. Reach out to LPA when the need arises. LPA is an integral part of the well-meant, often spoken phrase, “we will get through this together.” Thank you for being a part of LPA and for all that you do. Remember to Take Care.
Yesterday marked just one month since the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Louisiana. So much has changed in thirty days in the lives of our clients/patients and our own. I marvel at how many of my routines are now different. We are all encountering rapidly changing circumstances that have both transient and potentially […]
The Executive Council of LPA understands that our members are facing extraordinary challenges. Psychologists all over the world are meeting the stresses and mental health demands presented by COVID-19, while exercising self-care. With so much uncertainty, accurate information is vital. I want you to know that LPA is active in clarifying concerns of our members […]