Associations with the word “quarantine” are extremely negative, and that’s understandable. After all, it signifies not only the loss of a certain freedom, and the opportunity to lead your regular lifestyle, but also the need to stay in the same space indefinitely with the relatives who suddenly turned out to be “too” close.
Far from every single one of us are prepared for such a challenge, even on condition of an almost perfect relationship; and in a situation where there’s almost tangible anxiety floating around, fears are becoming real, and tension is electrifying the space and making it crackle slightly, even less so.
Before we start thinking about what to do (and what not to do) whilst locked up with our beloved family, let’s look at potential problems. When you know what to expect, inner preparedness is formed more thoroughly. Forewarned is forearmed!
1. Who’s there?
The in-laws, sisters, brothers, grandmothers, grandfathers, mothers, fathers, possibly uncles and aunts. All these people can be both the dearest and the closest, and “blood” relatives only, without any emotional bonds in place.
2. What’s the problem?
- you’re stuck with your loved ones in the same place, and will spend some, possibly quite a long time, with this group of people. Under normal circumstances, we have an opportunity to interrupt a tiring contact – by going to work, for a walk, to the cinema – anywhere, really. The percentage of spending time directly at home on weekdays for most people is less than 50%: work, business, travel, entertainment. Now it’s 100% and there’s no getting away from that;
- the very fact that “there’s nowhere to go” is incredibly frustrating. When a person on a diet (another limitation), realizes that something is categorically impossible for him, he begins to have agonizing dreams only about that very thing. In this situation, the same mechanism is activated: the very word “impossible” disconcerts and adds fuel to the dysphoric mood;
- more people, more irritants. We remember that not only you, but also the rest of the family are experiencing complex anxieties, which means that the potential likelihood of conflicts increases sharply;
- perhaps there are people with whom you in principle have a hard time dealing — a lingering misunderstanding with your mother, a confrontation with your mother-in-law, a conflict of interest with your sister, a drunk father-in-law — yes, every family has its own issues.
In this situation, many negative emotions are brought to the surface: various fears, anxieties, confusion and anger are awakened. There are even studies that say that people experience symptoms of post-traumatic stress, and all these manifestations can be multiplied by the number of people nearby.
Of course, in these conditions, it’s difficult to tune your thoughts to positivity, and the stressed people nearby are causing a fuss that can be perceived easily at regular times, but now it’s starting to annoy you and drive you mad.
Because of the above, the amount of conflicts goes up, and the clouds of tension thicken over a single country – an apartment or a house. Our task is to help you think safety measures through and work out a plan about how to reduce general tension, not aggravate conflicts and, if possible, spend this period without losses. Whether in Nerve Cells or Relatives 😊 We will deal with that in our next article.