Jump to content

Menu

COVID - Getting Past the Anger or Embrace it?


Recommended Posts

My parents visited us last week after their 2nd dose of the vaccine. It was the first we saw them in person since January of 2020. They had COVID in November and my dad was hospitalized for a few days. It was obvious that he has not fully regained his strength. He doesn't have as much energy as he had before and he tires easily. I hate to admit this but I have a feeling that his bout with COVID will probably shorten his life. 

Another person that I know died of COVID last week. She had many medical conditions and very low cognitive abilities. She was depending on everyone around her to be try to protect her. 

I found that I was almost seething with anger at people who denied the reality of the pandemic, people who refused to wear masks, and people who are now refusing to get vaccinated. 

I recently read an article that I can't find now that discussed how most of us have a flawed understanding of forgiveness because it does not include justice. It's a kind of gaslighting when we're told that we are supposed to forgive without changes being made or acknowledgement that something was wrong. 

I know that anger can be crippling and it isn't always good for us to hold onto it but anger is not always bad. I recently came out of a religious environment where anger was seen as bad. It encouraged a kind of passivity, IMHO. I'd felt for a long time that there something wrong with this. Some things deserve anger. It also seems like encouraging this kind of passivity benefits people in power. 

I can't be the only one who feels like this right now. Where are you at in your anger journey over COVID? 

I feel like this is one of those dividing events, that many of us are emotionally disconnecting from others over how they reacted to COVID and there won't be a coming back together in the future. Does that make sense? 

 

  • Like 23
  • Thanks 3
  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

For what is worth, I am not a forgive kind of person on big things.  Step on my foot, totally fine.  But big things I don't usually let go. 

I am thankful that nobody in my family took the other side of Covid.  "Friends" who did are no longer in that category anymore.  Sorry, I just can't do it.  If you refused to wear masks and not get a vaccine (without some medical reason) that can end this pandemic.  I don't have room for people like that in my life.   I don't know if what I am feeling is hate?  I mean part of it is sure.  But I feel like I am still in utter shock about people who would do that.  Still feeling like a what the heck is wrong with humanity ? But hey I am still judging people who are going on Spring Break trips.  

 

So yeah, I don't think I can get over that.  We had a family friend (sort of family) die of Covid.  

 

But I am also choosing to focus on the positive.  Seeing all the people who are getting vaccines everyday!  I am just so thankful and happy.  Every single person who is doing that is helping end this.  Making it safer for every other person.  I know most people are probably doing it for their own self, but it protects the whole community.  I was at a vaccine site this morning and was just so thankful for everyone going in.  They are helping to get my children back to a life that is normal and keeping them safe.  

  • Like 12
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am very angry at people who don't take Covid seriously. We have family who work in settings where they exposed to people who are taking vacations right now. They can't quit. Vacations. Can you imagine choosing to go somewhere on holiday right now, where you'll be going inside, say, a historic house, or a small museum? Staying at local hotels, eating at restaurants? School groups are coming, from all sorts of areas, for their class trip. 😳😡 Who decided this was a good idea for this year? And yet, apparently, many people did. Yes, I am very angry. The museum in question is supported by donors, and has multiple virtual options, but these people had to go in person. This is how these variants are spreading.

  • Like 13
  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My city just lifted its mask ordinance. Businesses can still require masks but I'm not sure how they'll be able to enforce it. I feel like it's going to divide our city further (town of 75k people). A group of us have already started making lists of businesses that will still require the mask and try to support those. 

The ordinance was voted on Monday night, the lift to go into effect Tuesday night. Tuesday morning a friend got harassed by a gas station owner for WEARING  a mask. Another employee stood up for my friend, but the damage was done. She won't be returning to that gas station. A mutual friend went to the gas station and told the manager because of the poor treatment my friend received, they also will not be returning as a customer. I can't imagine they will really care. Many of the people here have been lazy about masks requirements anyway and there are a large number of people who see it as a sign of socialist control. (roll eyes). So people who support mask wearing will be in some businesses while those adamantly against it will have plenty of places to go. 

I'm angry about other things in my life - not Covid related, but I'm angry that we're at this point. I'm angry that science education seems to be so lacking that people see it as an affront to their rights to be asked to wear a mask. 

I found out a few weeks ago that one of my favorite medieval scholars died from Covid. He was in his 80s, but still. 

I read a meme that says that someone may still be alive today because of the cautions you've taken in the last year. 

As far as my own anger, I try to change what I can, keep moving forward, and not let it consume me. I have moved forward, but I am still angry at a few select people. Long story, I'm not getting into, but I will not forgive them, but I will make the best of the given situation. Anger can be a catalyst, bitterness is what I'm trying to avoid. 

 

  • Like 13
  • Thanks 1
  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You aren't alone. There are a few people I will never respect or trust again due to their attitude and behaviors about this pandemic. I'll be civil to them, but I'll always hold it against them. And no, I don't think that attitude is bad for me. Forgiveness only works when the person(s) in the wrong asks for it and sincerely repents. Without that there is no foundation for or use for forgiveness. I was enraged late last winter/early spring. Now I've accepted their uncaring, selfish behavior for what it is, for what they are. I see it (them) clearly. But I don't let my feelings about those people consume me, either. Not by a long shot. They will still be in my life, and I will be civil to them, and it won't make my stress level go up. But I won't forget. I kind of feel like it's been a blessing in a way. They showed me clearly who they are, and now I know. And that's kind of a good thing.

Edited by Pawz4me
  • Like 13
  • Thanks 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's okay to be angry. Anger at bad things can help prompt us to make things better.

But... if you've got a lot of anger that you can't direct towards anything productive, and it's making you unhappy, then it's okay to want to not be angry, and find some way to do that.

With regards to forgiveness, I think of forgiveness that you choose to do for your own reasons. It's okay not to forgive people, or to forgive them only with conditions, or to forgive them but still not want to associate with them. Your feelings are your feelings.

If your inability to forgive or to do anything about your anger distresses you, you might consider therapy. Given your post, I feel I should be clear that by "therapy" I mean with a licensed professional - a lot of people claim to offer therapy from a religious perspective who aren't trained in any way.

  • Like 10
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Pawz4me said:

You aren't alone. There are a few people I will never respect or trust again due to their attitude and behaviors about this pandemic. I'll be civil to them, but I'll always hold it against them. And no, I don't think that attitude is bad for me. Forgiveness only works when the person(s) in the wrong ask for it and sincerely repent. Without that there is no foundation for or use for forgiveness. I was enraged late last winter/early spring. Now I've accepted their uncaring, selfish behavior for what it is, for what they are. I see it (them) clearly. But I don't let my feelings about those people consume me, either. Not by a long shot. They will still be in my life, and I will be civil to them, and it won't make my stress level go up. But I won't forget. I kind of feel like it's been a blessing in a way. They showed me clearly who they are, and now I know. And that's kind of a good thing.

Yes, for sure.  While it hurts to learn sometimes, you need to know.  

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, what is forgiveness other than you letting go of something that is eating you?

Are the people who disagreed with you even looking for your forgiveness?  Are they in any way affected by your state of mind on this matter?

I truly believe that once this has had a chance to settle for a while, everyone with a sound mind will put the differences behind us and move on.  And that is what's best for everyone.  Everyone.  So I hope not too many people are fighting against that.

My recommendation is to let time heal it.

  • Like 15
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, elegantlion said:

My city just lifted its mask ordinance. Businesses can still require masks but I'm not sure how they'll be able to enforce it. I feel like it's going to divide our city further (town of 75k people). A group of us have already started making lists of businesses that will still require the mask and try to support those. 

The ordinance was voted on Monday night, the lift to go into effect Tuesday night. Tuesday morning a friend got harassed by a gas station owner for WEARING  a mask. Another employee stood up for my friend, but the damage was done. She won't be returning to that gas station. A mutual friend went to the gas station and told the manager because of the poor treatment my friend received, they also will not be returning as a customer. I can't imagine they will really care. Many of the people here have been lazy about masks requirements anyway and there are a large number of people who see it as a sign of socialist control. (roll eyes). So people who support mask wearing will be in some businesses while those adamantly against it will have plenty of places to go. 

I'm angry about other things in my life - not Covid related, but I'm angry that we're at this point. I'm angry that science education seems to be so lacking that people see it as an affront to their rights to be asked to wear a mask. 

I found out a few weeks ago that one of my favorite medieval scholars died from Covid. He was in his 80s, but still. 

I read a meme that says that someone may still be alive today because of the cautions you've taken in the last year. 

As far as my own anger, I try to change what I can, keep moving forward, and not let it consume me. I have moved forward, but I am still angry at a few select people. Long story, I'm not getting into, but I will not forgive them, but I will make the best of the given situation. Anger can be a catalyst, bitterness is what I'm trying to avoid. 

 

I saw that too, and took it to heart when I was bored of staying home for so long.  

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm trying to spend less time being actively angry at people and to focus on the things I can control. But there are a whole lot of people who I think less of now than than I used to. The pandemic has been a test of everyone's capacity for empathy and sacrifice; I can't assume the best of everyone anymore (not that I did--but I used to at least TRY to and think I should, I guess?) when I've seen exactly how they act when faced with that test. So--I don't know--again, I'm trying not to be angry. But there are a lot of people I no longer think are really worth my time, and that's fine. I'm lucky in that I haven't lost anyone I'm close to to COVID (I would have a much harder time not being angry were that the case) and that my closest family and friends have all done their best to be cautious and keep people safe (which is not to say they've always made the same decisions I would (and, of course, I'm sure I've made decisions others wouldn't), but they've grappled with the many tough choices this past year and tried to make good, responsible ones).

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess I was feeling angry enough that I didn't really answer your question. 🙄😉

Once we get past this to some reasonable degree... everyone vaccinated who wants to be, clear that our vaccines are effective against any variants going around... I'll be able to move past it. The people in my own life who don't take it as seriously as I do have still worn masks and mostly respected my concerns. I'm grateful to live in an area where that's been the societal consensus.

If people in my life had acted differently, my opinion of them would reflect that.

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Imagine if the world held us to account permanently for every mistake we made or disagreement we had.  Or am I the only person here who has made mistakes?

In my experience, most of the people who have taken fewer precautions than me have done it because they believed it was scientifically equal or better.  Were their sources always the best, probably not, but is that an unpardonable sin?  In a situation where nobody can honestly be sure who is right, and info sources attack each other with little to no objectivity, IMO it makes no sense to be angry at people for listening to one uncertain source over another uncertain source.

If there are people who would purposely make others sick, they probably would do that regardless of Covid.  I don't have people like that in my life though.

  • Like 13
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I try not to get angry with those who I feel are muddling through this - IE: their kid plays basketball or they eat out (if it's legal - I don't understand Christians breaking the law) or they still attend co-op or church in person. Sometimes I actually succeed; I've gotten better at it over the past year. 

I do have a lot of anger toward those who think cautious people have "cowered in fear" for the past year and use nicknames like "sheeple" or use terms like "face diapers". I also have a veritable butt-ton of anger with people who like to say, "Let's all just get along. You do you, and I'll do me." while they're "doing me" means that I can't send my kid to X Activity because there will be no masks or social distancing. And if I say anything, then I get the "mental health teen talk" - which enrages me as I have a mentally ill teen who can't attend because yours needs to attend without a mask to feel "normal".

I'm working on it - slowly.

 

 

  • Like 13
  • Thanks 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

53 minutes ago, Ordinary Shoes said:

I know that anger can be crippling and it isn't always good for us to hold onto it but anger is not always bad. I recently came out of a religious environment where anger was seen as bad. It encouraged a kind of passivity, IMHO. I'd felt for a long time that there something wrong with this. Some things deserve anger. It also seems like encouraging this kind of passivity benefits people in power. 

I can't be the only one who feels like this right now. Where are you at in your anger journey over COVID? 

I feel like this is one of those dividing events, that many of us are emotionally disconnecting from others over how they reacted to COVID and there won't be a coming back together in the future. Does that make sense? 

I don't feel angry anymore. I felt angry a year ago, and I've moved on. 

However, I do feel pretty determined to forge my own path and not to deal with people who blew this off. I had a falling out with an ex-friend over this when this all started, and by now, I've moved past the anger phase and into the "I won't deal with people who have either behaved badly or made excuses people for people who behaved badly" mode. I mean, it's not like I can avoid them entirely... but I don't want to get close to them in any way. 

  • Like 9
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I feel like, the people who embraced whatever stance they had for stupid reasons lost some of my respect.

And who I feel angry with are people who inflict their stupidity on others.  I was in Costco looking at something the other day, a place I hardly ever go right now but really crucially needed to for that one thing, and this guy came up right next to me.  I said, SIX FEET! And he said, you’re not looking at those books that I want to see.  (Well, expletive, I was looking at the copier information right across from them, you’re still practically touching me, for no reason except that you HAVE TO SEE THAT BOOK RIGHT NOW GOSH DARN IT which is ridiculous.)  I am still bemused by this.  Did he think I would just move away as he advanced?  Even though I was there first and obviously engaged?  Am I mad about it?  No, but I was in the moment.  It was so obviously stupid and unnecessary and needlessly endangering for purely selfish reasons.  That’s a small example but there are, of course, big ones.  I have a friend who lives in a small town in North Dakota where some guy who had a mild case of it went around visiting people so that they would get it and get to herd immunity sooner.  Without telling them.  That still makes me mad months later.  No one gets to pick that for someone else without their consent.  But, I don’t think about it much.

I guess that’s the key for me.  I don’t think about it much.  I don’t dwell on it.  That doesn’t do anyone any good.  I use it as information.  Ie some people are jerks like that, so I have to be more careful to protect myself because I can’t trust my health to anyone else.

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My feelings about a favorite local restaurant’s recent saga kind of sums up how I feel toward a lot of people.  They decided that they would not require masks indoors even while not eating, despite a mask mandate, that people could sit at the bar (also against state rules), and they ignored capacity limits.  This led to the health department closing them down.  But!  They didn’t shut down.  Nope.  They kept operating, and the whole thing became an even more politicized mess, going to court and lots of publicity.  

I’ll never go in that restaurant again.  I’m not wasting any anger on it, and I still wish them well, but I find them untrustworthy and selfish, and I’m sad to see that their bottom line was always more important than the well being of their patrons and the larger community. My disappointment at losing one of the only restaurant options that did excellent GF options... eh, I’ll get over it.

This is how I feel about some people in my life.  They have shown me who they are, what their priorities are, the level of care they have not just for the general population but also for me and mine directly.  I know who they are now, after a year of this.  

I also have some friends who aren’t as careful as we’ve been, but are caring enough to understand our level of caution (not making comments about us being “afraid” is a clue).  We will pick up where we left off as soon as we are all vaccinated.  We’re all halfway there.

 

Edited by Spryte
  • Like 14
Link to comment
Share on other sites

One more point, I guess...

Anger is often a secondary emotion. For me in this situation, it's an outgrowth of fear for my family members, whom I see being endangered by stupid, selfish frivolity.

Once the fear can reasonably subside, the anger is going to dissipate. But the information I've gleaned from the experience will continue to inform my opinions.

  • Like 7
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, Spryte said:

I also have some friends who aren’t as careful as we’ve been, but are caring enough to understand our level of caution (not making comments about us being “afraid” is a clue).  We will pick up where we left off as soon as we are all vaccinated.  We’re all halfway there.

I do have a friend who won’t vaccinate, and I’m not mad at her. I mean, maybe I should be, but she sounds scared and not aggressive and “in your face.” And she’s been very careful the whole pandemic...

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 minutes ago, SKL said:

Were their sources always the best, probably not, but is that an unpardonable sin?

I guess I can acknowledge that a behavior is not "unpardonable" (whatever that means; I'm certainly not the judge of pardons), but still feel very convicted that I will not choose to be friends with people who behave that way.

The people in my life who are (IMO) being reckless and selfish are friends. And they're homeschooling friends, so if they truly don't understand or value finding reliable sources about a matter that is life or death for fellow citizens, then both their morality and homeschooling philosophy are at odds with mine.

No, that doesn't mean they are unredeemable human beings. I'm certainly not hoping they die or lose all their friends or get banished from all local homeschooling events. But I am deciding that I would prefer to spend my limited time and energy nurturing friendships with people who share more of my values and with whom I could form more trusting relationships.

  • Like 11
  • Thanks 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

33 minutes ago, SKL said:

Imagine if the world held us to account permanently for every mistake we made or disagreement we had.  Or am I the only person here who has made mistakes?

In my experience, most of the people who have taken fewer precautions than me have done it because they believed it was scientifically equal or better.  Were their sources always the best, probably not, but is that an unpardonable sin?  In a situation where nobody can honestly be sure who is right, and info sources attack each other with little to no objectivity, IMO it makes no sense to be angry at people for listening to one uncertain source over another uncertain source.

If there are people who would purposely make others sick, they probably would do that regardless of Covid.  I don't have people like that in my life though.

Yes, this. And I can't prove I was right in my community. I think some things they were/are doing were reckless, but I have seen no adverse consequences.  So I am getting mad at them for things that could have happened??  That is where I struggle. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

34 minutes ago, SKL said:

Imagine if the world held us to account permanently for every mistake we made or disagreement we had.  Or am I the only person here who has made mistakes?

In my experience, most of the people who have taken fewer precautions than me have done it because they believed it was scientifically equal or better.  Were their sources always the best, probably not, but is that an unpardonable sin?  In a situation where nobody can honestly be sure who is right, and info sources attack each other with little to no objectivity, IMO it makes no sense to be angry at people for listening to one uncertain source over another uncertain source.

If there are people who would purposely make others sick, they probably would do that regardless of Covid.  I don't have people like that in my life though.

In my own life, the ones I'm most angry with are the ones that keep saying, "most people can fight it off" or "I can fight it off" and dismissing all hose that CAN'T as basically worthless. If they are unwilling to change anything about their lives to protect the vulnerable, that's not just ignorance, it is selfishness. 

  • Like 21
  • Thanks 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

There are people in the periphery of my life who have bought into the politicized part of this.  Those people were at the periphery already for a reason.  Covid just confirms that for me.

My actual friends and family are all careful.  Some to differing degrees but not one dismisses masking etc.  I have actually been pleasantly surprised that some people that I thought wouldn't vaccinate have gotten the vaccine (though I don't quiz people on this or anything).    The people I know who have been less careful (but not totally cavalier) have still been respectful.  I did have one "run in" with a friend who went off on me on when I shared that we were getting vaccinated.  I don't push back often on people but I called her out on it and she apologized. 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

For the most part, I file this in the same category as many things that I see all the time. Like, the majority of Americans don't think I should have the right to vote. A huge portion of Americans think and do all kinds of things that I find morally despicable, honestly. Covid is just... more of the same. So in some ways, yes, I'm so angry. In others, no, I'm just... resigned. This is America. Sometimes I want to fix it. Sometimes I want to celebrate what's great about life and people here. Sometimes I want to be understanding and let people grow. Sometimes I want to swear and scream about how awful it is here and how heartless everyone is.

The disease hasn't claimed anyone I was super close to. People I know who had it are mostly recovered, even though some clearly have long term effects, but they seem to be on the mend. I lost a lot of far flung older family in the last year, but no one I was really close to and supposedly no one from Covid itself, though I'm pretty dubious it didn't play a role. I have lost my brother over it. He refused to engage in a conversation over precautions and took absolutely every request we made as a personal affront, even as I repeatedly affirmed that he wasn't doing anything wrong and that it was okay if we had different levels and types of precautions and that I respected his parenting, choices, etc. He just couldn't hear it. So then he lashed out with a lot of projecting. We invited him months before to consider testing and isolating and then doing Thanksgiving together with my mom. He said no. So my mom and I went ahead with plans - so much simpler anyway. But he doesn't remember that he didn't want to engage in plans and says we secretly got together and didn't invite them. At this point, I don't foresee reconciliation any time soon. But I'm not angry. He's just... like this. And not really worth being upset over. It's so beyond the pandemic. 

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jesus got angry too. So for a church to imply that it’s a good idea to let abuse go unchecked, that smacks of religious abuse to me. Righteous anger is one thing.  Turning the other cheek was a political statement, not an encouragement to let abusers abuse.

I think forgiveness is best understood in a secular way- the idea of letting go of the idea that it should have been different. I can let go of the idea that a family member shouldn’t have gone to her brother’s funeral with active, diagnosed Covid. I can act in a respectful manner to her and still never trust her to be a good person with good judgment ever again. She’s selfish and didn’t care who died as a result of her actions.  Now I know that about her.  I didn’t know that before but it didn’t make it less true. 

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I was younger, someone who had wronged me (and many others) told me I "could be bitter or better." It made me so angry- it's one thing to come from a person who's trying to sympathize, but another from someone who was actively perpetrating the offense, kwim? This person was in a position of authority in a school and church. It stuck with me; how rude it was to say and how manipulative it was. This year, I've had an epiphany- sometimes bitter is better! I was given a false choice!

I've been very frustrated by some things I've seen this year. I can forgive, but I won't forget. It will inform my future behavior and decisions and I think that's a good thing. It's better for me to have this new information and may allow me to make better choices in the future. I'm not going to cut people out of my life, but maybe I'll think twice before leaving my kids with them. 

  • Like 9
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have been angry but I also have to ask myself what good does it do. How does it make the world a better place? If I just separated myself off from all my family and friends, for one thing I'd be lonely but for another thing, they would never hear a differing opinions, ever. They all listen to the same news, forward the same crappy emails, and for the most part only talk to people that already agree with them. 

The only way forward as a nation is for people who have differing opinions to engage with one another respectfully but it is soooo stinking hard.

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Where I am with Covid-I used to be so angry over the covidiots. I left a lot of FB groups because I just couldn't let things go. I would feel a chill of anger run up my back when I read things those people posted. I also used to obsessively check the rates. I don't know if it was self-preservation or what but I have been able to let a lot of things go. Or maybe I am calmer because there has been a major change politically and I can sense that there will be an end to this, whereas before I wasn't sure.

I only know one person who had Covid and then died, although her Covid diagnosis is what led to a diagnosis of cancer that was very aggressive. So I am not sure if I can say that I know anyone who has died as a result of Covid. But I think I would have a much harder time to let anger go in that situation. 

On forgiveness (in general)--I believe when people say you need to forgive, it can be very self-serving. Even if they are not the one who needs forgiveness. Perhaps they dislike the conflict and just want everyone to get along. I feel like forgiveness is a very personal thing and no one should tell you when or what to forgive. I don't think anyone is ever any obligation to forgive anyone else. Sure, some will say that you are only hurting yourself with anger when you don't forgive. I don't really believe that. You can resolve the anger and still not forgive. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, frogger said:

The only way forward as a nation is for people who have differing opinions to engage with one another respectfully but it is soooo stinking hard.

That requires both parties, though!

I’m willing to engage until I’m blue in the face, as you’ve probably noticed. Much good does it do.

  • Like 4
  • Haha 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, Not_a_Number said:

That requires both parties, though!

I’m willing to engage until I’m blue in the face, as you’ve probably noticed. Much good does it do.

I really appreciate your efforts, though. Your threads are some of the best examples of Socratic dialogue I've seen.

  • Like 7
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Ordinary Shoes said:It's a kind of gaslighting when we're told that we are supposed to forgive without changes being made or acknowledgement that something was wrong. 

. Some things deserve anger. It also seems like encouraging this kind of passivity benefits people in power. 

Where are you at in your anger journey over COVID? 

 

 

These quotes reflect where I am at. 
 

I used to be afraid of being angry. It wasn’t safe or appropriate in my previous conservative church to be angry or to express disapproval with church leadership. I belonged to a church that did not apologize, ever, even for really awful previous behavior.

Profoundly, that church showed an incredible lack of empathy or love. 

I really feel like mask refusal is that same profound lack of empathy or caring for another. In my extended family, the mask refusers and covid deniers have other behaviors that exhibit a lack of empathy for others. That kind of behavior is dangerous....to me, to my neighbors, to anyone not in their tribe.

I don’t think this is a new fracturing. I think it’s just a very visible one.
 

 

  • Like 9
Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 minutes ago, Innisfree said:

I really appreciate your efforts, though. Your threads are some of the best examples of Socratic dialogue I've seen.

Thank you. That means a lot to me, because I do work hard at it, and it doesn't necessarily always feel fruitful. I feel like I need to do some thinking about what it would take to be more effective and inspire less defensiveness when I attempt to do this, although perhaps that's simply a tall order. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This isn’t specifically COVID related, because we have been very fortunate not to have any division or hard feelings regarding the pandemic, but it is about forgiveness 

I recently left a group that I had been in 20 plus years over forgiveness. A person in a position of power went off of the rails and acted irresponsibly and hurt people. I wanted to know how she would be held responsible such as maybe we would all need to agree before letting her back into the group. Maybe, she would need to apologize to us if she ever decided to rejoin. The answer was, “Well, did Jesus die for your sins?” Which meant basically, “Who are you to have standards and require people to behave appropriately?” 
 

I didn’t get angry, I just recognized that the change in leadership that had occurred was never going to work for me, and I quietly dropped out. 
 

I think we get more angry when we feel trapped, and don’t realize we have choices. For sure, if the person behaving irresponsibly is your kid or spouse or in-laws, you are in a really bad spot. Right now, I’m just talking about friends or more distant family members. 
 

I believe it is okay to have preferences and standards of behavior that you insist upon if people want to be around you. I don’t think that is mean. I don’t think that makes you a bad person. I don’t think that makes you unforgiving. 
 

So, with the people who are on opposite sides of issues I consider non negotiable, I tell myself, “That is good information to have. Now I see that we just are not compatible going forward. I don’t choose to be around this.” For me, this dissipates the anger. I don’t have to prove they are in the wrong, even if they are. I just take my power and realize it is okay for me to have preferences. 
 

Sometimes, it seems to be over issues other people might find silly, but I feel like with that action, they showed me who they really are, and it is okay for me to believe their action and decide I don’t want anything to do with them. 
 

I also have close friends who have reacted differently to the pandemic Than I have, but I understand why and it really isn’t a point of contention between us because they also give me grace about my own weak areas.  Not all issues are non negotiable for me, but plenty of them sure are! 

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm not angry that others have different opinions about COVID and how best to live right now.  I expect that, just like I expect people to have different opinions about everything else.  I do get angry when people are unkind to others or speak disrespectfully about them because they have different opinions and concerns.  I've lost respect for people on both sides because of that, both in real life and here.

  • Like 8
  • Thanks 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, klmama said:

I'm not angry that others have different opinions about COVID and how best to live right now.  I expect that, just like I expect people to have different opinions about everything else.  I do get angry when people are unkind to others or speak disrespectfully about them because they have different opinions and concerns.  I've lost respect for people on both sides because of that, both in real life and here.

That can easily get into tone policing, though. Being unkind to people because they are endangering others is perhaps impolite but is not the same order of magnitude as actually endangering others... 

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 minutes ago, klmama said:

I'm not angry that others have different opinions about COVID and how best to live right now.  I expect that, just like I expect people to have different opinions about everything else.  I do get angry when people are unkind to others or speak disrespectfully about them because they have different opinions and concerns.  I've lost respect for people on both sides because of that, both in real life and here.

I'm unsure what this means. 

It sounds like you would not be angry with someone for a difference of opinion over anything, including say, drinking and driving. And that you would get angry if someone spoke harshly to them about drinking and driving. Surely, that isn't what you mean - that speaking harshly about a dangerous activity is worse than doing the dangerous thing?

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's not a coincidence that one of the books I'm working through is Forgiving What You Can't Forget by Lysa Terkeurst.

What is most angering to me is the lies and misinformation at the base of a lot of differences of opinion. People close to me who have sometimes misunderstood things but have take the pandemic seriously this whole time are slowly getting wooed away from truth. The worst part is that a huge chunk of this is people spreading stuff without verifying it. If it were bald-faced conspiratorial stuff like I heard early on, I think my loved ones would not be falling for it slowly. Since it's coming in more mild-mannered ways from people who typically have some common sense, it's so, so deceptively effective and harder to discuss/disprove. 

And then there is just pure stubbornness--the people I know in this category seem to think they have more control than they do and make dumb but honestly good faith decisions because they just aren't accepting that they can't control things. 

This weird gray area of behavior is really hitting home right now, and I can't do much about it but pray, and I don't like that feeling. 

  • Like 4
  • Sad 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

There are people in the periphery of my life who have bought into the politicized part of this.  Those people were at the periphery already for a reason.  Covid just confirms that for me.

My actual friends and family are all careful.  Some to differing degrees but not one dismisses masking etc.  I have actually been pleasantly surprised that some people that I thought wouldn't vaccinate have gotten the vaccine (though I don't quiz people on this or anything).    The people I know who have been less careful (but not totally cavalier) have still been respectful.  I did have one "run in" with a friend who went off on me on when I shared that we were getting vaccinated.  I don't push back often on people but I called her out on it and she apologized. 

I don't ask people about the vax either, but my cleaning lady brought it up.  She shared that her parents have gotten it, and she's getting it so she can visit with them safely.  I just said something like "everyone should decide based on their own situation," and she was like "THANK you!"  Apparently she was getting flack from people in her life who don't like the vax.

I have relatives who don't mask, but they are still careful not to spread germs.  Nobody I know wants the older folks to get sick.

I've seen the fringe on fb, with people I don't know IRL.  It makes me wonder if they are actually less rebellious about it IRL.

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Farrar said:

For the most part, I file this in the same category as many things that I see all the time. Like, the majority of Americans don't think I should have the right to vote. A huge portion of Americans think and do all kinds of things that I find morally despicable, honestly. Covid is just... more of the same. So in some ways, yes, I'm so angry. In others, no, I'm just... resigned. This is America. Sometimes I want to fix it. Sometimes I want to celebrate what's great about life and people here. Sometimes I want to be understanding and let people grow. Sometimes I want to swear and scream about how awful it is here and how heartless everyone is.

The disease hasn't claimed anyone I was super close to. People I know who had it are mostly recovered, even though some clearly have long term effects, but they seem to be on the mend. I lost a lot of far flung older family in the last year, but no one I was really close to and supposedly no one from Covid itself, though I'm pretty dubious it didn't play a role. I have lost my brother over it. He refused to engage in a conversation over precautions and took absolutely every request we made as a personal affront, even as I repeatedly affirmed that he wasn't doing anything wrong and that it was okay if we had different levels and types of precautions and that I respected his parenting, choices, etc. He just couldn't hear it. So then he lashed out with a lot of projecting. We invited him months before to consider testing and isolating and then doing Thanksgiving together with my mom. He said no. So my mom and I went ahead with plans - so much simpler anyway. But he doesn't remember that he didn't want to engage in plans and says we secretly got together and didn't invite them. At this point, I don't foresee reconciliation any time soon. But I'm not angry. He's just... like this. And not really worth being upset over. It's so beyond the pandemic. 

I feel all of this.

In my own family of origin, I don't think Covid is "the problem".  I think that Covid did shine a BRIGHT light on already existing issues.  I have existed as a chronic people pleaser and apparently it took a pandemic for me to change my ways. In some ways anger allowed me to see clearly, and my unwillingness to enable has cost me a sibling relationship.  

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Farrar said:

... I have lost my brother over it. He refused to engage in a conversation over precautions and took absolutely every request we made as a personal affront, even as I repeatedly affirmed that he wasn't doing anything wrong and that it was okay if we had different levels and types of precautions and that I respected his parenting, choices, etc. He just couldn't hear it. So then he lashed out with a lot of projecting. We invited him months before to consider testing and isolating and then doing Thanksgiving together with my mom. He said no. So my mom and I went ahead with plans - so much simpler anyway. But he doesn't remember that he didn't want to engage in plans and says we secretly got together and didn't invite them. At this point, I don't foresee reconciliation any time soon. But I'm not angry. He's just... like this. And not really worth being upset over. It's so beyond the pandemic. 

I have a young relative like this - willing to cut off family over differences that don't justify the reaction.  (In our case, I am hoping it's partly a maturity thing that will resolve before her mom, a cancer patient, dies.)  It seems likely that with her rigid thought processes, coupled with the influence of her romantic partner, she would have cut people off even without the pandemic.  It's sad, but some people / stages are just like that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

Do you find yourself actively seething in anger over drunk drivers who are directly responsible for tens of thousands of deaths each year? 

I'm not seething about either drunk drivers or people who were cavalier about COVID. But I would be appalled if my friend habitually drove drunk and would reevaluate our friendship. Same thing. 

Frankly, I think that if a drunk driver had killed your husband, you'd be pretty mad at the driver. 

  • Like 10
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Plum said:

Then how do you feel about half of the HCW that haven’t been vaccinated? Can you forgive them? 

Answering this for myself, because this isn't the first time vaccination has been brought up --

It may be weird, but at least ATM I'm okay with people who choose to not get vaccinated, or who want to wait a bit. I can't say that there will be no harm from the vaccines. We know there are very (very) small percentages of people who have been harmed by other vaccines. 

What I can't forgive--and won't put up with any gaslighting efforts to convince me that I should----are people who refuse to do things that won't harm them in the slightest. The people who won't mask, who won't follow social distancing, who have attended or hosted large gatherings in violation of restrictions, etc. 

  • Like 18
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

Do you find yourself actively seething in anger over drunk drivers who are directly responsible for tens of thousands of deaths each year? 

In the abstract, seething angry over all of them? No. But I have absolutely seethed over a family member who drove my children when she was drunk. That changed our relationship, though she still doesn't understand.

Same thing here.

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Honestly?  I am not really angry at people who dismiss the actual science of Covid.  (And there is actual science even if some of what we are learning is changing with more data.)  I do, however, think that they are stupid.  That might not be very nice of me to think.  And I don't tell them that to their face.  But as a principle, people who refuse to try to understand even rudimentary health information regarding a communicable disease are stupid.  (This is regarding the basic shared understanding of how the virus spreads and basic measures to control it even if they aren't 100% effective.)  And if they've tied that to political beliefs that too is stupid because it doesn't logically track.  I will not willingly be around stupid people during a pandemic.  Now once the pandemic is over, I guess I will see if their stupidity was a blindspot tied to this one thing or not.  In some cases, I suspect that it won't be.  Then it won't be as important to stay away from them but they will irritate me nonetheless. 

  • Like 16
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am angry that the government did not do enough to protect the elderly. I do not care about the general public getting vaccinated so much as I do about anyone working with at-risk populations. I feel like if we had not locked down last summer when deaths were so low and focused on protecting the elderly, then come winter, we would have had less deaths. I am angry that the state had senior living centers lockdown, but did not provide protection for the people living there. They had a constant influx of young adults coming and going from those places while banning family and preventing those people from getting medical care. The elderly spent pretty much a year sitting in their rooms, not even allowed to step outside or in the hallway to exercise, so just sitting in their chairs, and the living centers had no accountability or enforcement. There were "rules" but the centers were left to themselves to follow them if they wanted to. Those "rules" were not enforced and way too many people died.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

Do you find yourself actively seething in anger over drunk drivers who are directly responsible for tens of thousands of deaths each year?  

I change my behavior directly based on risk due to drunk drivers. I don't drive at times and on occasions where drunk driving is most likely to occur--I even try to keep track of local prom nights because the news is always filled with injured and dead teens around prom time.

I grew up in a rural area that had different risks--farm equipment, etc. and lacked some risks--it was many years before anyone in my county had AIDS even when the crisis was really picking up momentum. Our health class had local health department people talk to us about what was risky locally, and drunk driving was a huge scourge. It leaves an impression when nearly entire families are killed on rural roads too small to avoid a drunk driver, and local EMS people know the victims they're cutting out of cars (and the drunk drivers).

I do seethe at reckless driving as well. It's harder to minimize that risk and it has been up during COVID. I recently read that police were pulling people over for speeding less often to minimize COVID spread. Now that law enforcement has had a chance to get the vaccine, they are resuming more typical practices, and the roads are remarkably more peaceful than they have been in months. 

It all makes me angry, but it does eventually recede to the background until a "drunk driving" occasion comes up--thankfully, there often implement sobriety checkpoints. 

I have been stuck on the highway with a drunk driver, but thankfully, it was not crowded, and I could stay a safe distance away. Had I met him on a side road, the story could've been very different.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

Honestly?  I am not really angry at people who dismiss the actual science of Covid.  (And there is actual science even if some of what we are learning is changing with more data.)  I do, however, think that they are stupid.  That might not be very nice of me to think.  And I don't tell them that to their face.  But as a principle, people who refuse to try to understand even rudimentary health information regarding a communicable disease are stupid.  (This is regarding the basic shared understanding of how the virus spreads and basic measures to control it even if they aren't 100% effective.)  And if they've tied that to political beliefs that too is stupid because it doesn't logically track.  I will not willingly be around stupid people during a pandemic.  Now once the pandemic is over, I guess I will see if their stupidity was a blindspot tied to this one thing or not.  In some cases, I suspect that it won't be.  Then it won't be as important to stay away from them but they will irritate me nonetheless. 

I think I fall closest to this emotion, too. It makes me really angry at our educational system that people lack basic information, or aren't able to find/understand it. I think there is a great deal of actual inability to understand things - caused by low literacy rates, low reading comprehension, etc. I think a lot of people just cannot understand information because they can't read it or comprehend it. 

I was arguing with someone on FB the other day (bad idea, I know). They cited a CDC page that used the word "although" a bunch of times. It struck me... I don't think the person actually knew what the word "although" was doing in the sentences. They were citing the same evidence as me, but the word "although" clearly meant something different to them than to me. It changed the whole meaning of the sentence. @PeterPan will surely know what I'm talking about. And so... we couldn't come to consensus. But in the end I just felt really sad about it. 

 

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I’m trying to not be angry any more. I just quietly give business and smiles to the good and frown and avoid the bad.  Mostly I think it’s just sad. 
 

But sometimes people say things so... off I can’t not call them in it. 

Like last week when someone said, “I just can’t get on board with blaming and making healthy people accountable for the sickness of others.” 

I just looked at my beloved fellow Christian friend stunned and said, “Riiight.  To hell with Jesus on a cross for us.  How could we ever get on board with the strong being held accountable for the weak.😳🥺😒

so. um. “Trying” was the key word at the start of this post. Obviously have not made it to achievement yet. 

Edited by Murphy101
  • Like 12
  • Thanks 2
  • Haha 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...