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Life Arts    H4'ed 5/6/20

We're All Crazy Here: Covid, Chaos and Coping Advice for Mothers

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We're in the midst of airborne pandemic, there's a potentially deadly virus in the air, crazed protesters that are violently offended by anyone taking safety precautions in public and at home you're dealing with stir crazy, cabin fevered kids with ADHD bouncing off the walls and each other. What's a mother to do? Whatever, she has to do and that's fine.

As the parent of an adult child with bipolar disorder I've been dealing with chaos, uncertainty and our crappy American mental health system for decades now and I've learned a few things. The very first and most important thing I want to share with you is you can't reason with crazy. It does not work, it tends to make them angry and violent. Now I know a reasonable, compassionate person feels a burning need to try and reason with someone, persuade them, calm them down. I made that mistake in the beginning, until my child's psychiatrist told me when a person is in a violent, irrational state, that is the WORST thing to do, they feel attacked no matter what you are saying or trying to do and will become violent. The doctor advised a stay silent, back off, wait until they have calmed down to the point that they want your presence or to talk.

At first backing away from this child I loved when they were so obviously distressed, hurting and out of control was the hardest thing I had ever done. But the results were amazing!!! I wasn't getting hurt, they weren't getting hurt, it de-escalated much quicker than in the past. So for personal safety and sanity I highly recommend trying this technique with your crazy Trump supporting family members, the insane Open the State and Restart the Economy protesters, the science deniers and general lunatics that seem to be running the country and the streets right now. Do not engage, don't drive yourself insane trying to reason with the unreasonable, just back off and let them be crazy at a safe distance.

Secondly, I'm giving you permission to be a little crazy yourself, keep your sense of humor, laugh at inappropriate times, bawl your eyes out if you need to, be blissfully in denial for a moment, take a deep breath and carry on. There really is no right or wrong way to cope as long as you're not self-destructing, hurting yourself or someone else, you feel free to do what you need to do to survive, rest, recuperate and re-enter the fray. Because that is what mothers do.

Thirdly, I know you want to seem strong and brave for your kids. The world tells you to be the perfect female, spouse, wife, mother and about a million other things all at the same time and they tell you "look it's possible you can be everything!" I am here to tell you even if you couldn't find the energy to brush your teeth today, you already are everything to those children whether they are little or grown. If you are still breathing, trying, and loving you are not only doing just fine, you are a goddess, a warrior and the best mother in the world.

Finally, one last piece of advice, next November when you have the chance, do it by mail, wear a mask or a full Hazmat suit to do it, but VOTE. Vote for your children, for science, for Medicaid for all, to get that greedy, malignant, orange cancer out of our house and kick his cronies to the curb with him! It will feel good, it will feel heroic and instead of going back to "normal" let's get really crazy and strive for something better.

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Kimberly McNeil Social Media Pages: Facebook Page       Twitter Page       Linked In Page       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Kimberly McNeil is an honors student at Bowling Green State University in the School of Media and Communication. She is active in the Association of Women in Communication, Omicron Delta Kappa and as a Student Ambassador. Kimberly is married, (more...)

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