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Message 1 of 48

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Message 2 of 48

Thank you both @DrJulie  and @DrBarryJJacobs 

 

We’re in a weird time and a weird situation. We are experiencing worldwide stress. So, it makes sense that we are all anxious. Here, stress is the normal reaction to such an abnormal situation. So even though our reaction to a situation is the appropriate one, it doesn’t feel, right? It actually feels really wrong!  

 

Thank you both for all of your great replies to help us through this time!

AARPTeri
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Message 3 of 48

@AARPTeri 

Many of us live with extended family, whether children, grandchildren, step-children, etc. While we may feel strongly that stay at home orders are for the greater good, some teens may feel that these concerns don't apply to them. Aside from teens often feeling invincible, they also tend to feel especially concerned about their social lives.They're often eager to get out of the home to spend time with their friends. Many are in the developmental stage in which separating from family feels extremely important.  Should families allow teens to decide for themselves how to behave in this pandemic?

 

Just like you wouldn't hand the car keys to a teen without some discussion of driving safety, before giving a teen the privilege of leaving the home on their own during this time, have a conversation about risks and safety with regard to social distancing, masks and hand-washing. Discuss how their behavior can impact others and help them to understand their responsibility when it comes to protecting their family and friends. When they let you know that they'll behave responsibly, you can give them the opportunity to prove it. And then later, let them know you're proud of their good choices.

Best,

Julie

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Message 4 of 48

@DrJulie  and @DrBarryJJacobs 

 

How about those living with teenagers, how can we balance their need for independence with stay at home orders?

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Message 5 of 48

@AARPTeri 

It can be pretty hard to avoid all bickering! Especially when we are living with others and sheltering in place for weeks. But we can avoid letting bickering turn into arguing or fighting.

 

Try to remember that whatever you are bickering about is probably not extremely important. Try to keep some perspective. Compared to a virus that has wreaked havoc, most of our concerns are relatively minor.

 

Try to keep your sense of humor. Most issues would be amusing if the people bickering weren't taking them so seriously. Sometimes they are amusing right after the bickering ends!

 

Try to remember that we are all stressed out more than usual, so that small issues that we might normally overlook can irk us. Be the generous partner or family member, set an example, and let it go. If you both do this, you'll have taken care of one another and kept the bickering to a minimum.

Best,

Julie

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Message 6 of 48

@DrJulie   That is great advice and not only for married couples.  We have been spending a lot of time with the people we live with, and bickering is basically a fact of life.

 

How do we manage bickering when we are all in such close quarters?  Sometimes bickering just needs to happen or does it?

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Message 7 of 48

@AARPTeri 

This pandemic has caused a lot of grief and fear, but one potential silver lining is that many couples are spending much more time together. Many are feeling closer and more connected than they have in years. What are the secrets to this outcome? Couples feel closer when they share interests, a project, a hobby, exercise, cooking, whatever they both enjoy doing. When couples share their feelings with each other, positive or negative, they feel closer. Talking and taking the time to truly listen to one another helps couples to feel supported and cared for and that leads to a closer bond.

 

And when one partner feels moody, grumpy or irritable, the other responds with patience, understanding, space if needed, a hug if preferred, but doesn't take it personally. I recommend compassion and forgiveness whenever possible.

Best,

Julie

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Message 8 of 48

@DrBarryJJacobs  and @DrJulie 

 

Many spouses are spending a lot more time together than they’re used to. How can they use this time to strengthen their relationship?

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Message 9 of 48

@AARPTeri 

Now that things are beginning to open up, we are all struggling with how to feel safe while trying to live our lives during a pandemic. There is no one answer. Each of us has to make our own informed decisions about what feels good enough when it comes to mask wearing, hand-washing and social distancing. At the same time, we must respect the choices and decisions of others. 

 

Socializing can be a bit challenging when people don't see eye to eye. It makes sense to accommodate the person who prefers the higher level of caution. I think it's easiest to assume that they have reasons for their caution that deserve to be respected, such as a vulnerable family member, an elderly care-receiver, or even a sick family member. When we respect each other's needs and differences, navigating these new limits becomes much easier.

Best,

Julie

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Message 10 of 48

Hi @m658531j 

 

   Your mother is lucky to have you in her corner. You have a real sense of purpose and mission in caring for her and others. And that's just my point. Beyond talking, walking, reading, journaling, etc., you need to keep that mission in the forefront of your mind because it will propel you forward. No matter what obstacles you meet, you will overcome them because you have that kind of determination.Never underestimate the power of purpose and grit. Keep fighting the good fight.--Barry

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