You, like me, are probably sad and angry about the events that occurred in Charlottesville and in The White House last week.

Sad and angry not only from the gathering of white supremacists and Neo-Nazis and the hateful rhetoric they spew and represent but in the pitiful lack of leadership of condemnation of these events from the highest office in the land.

This week has been a hard week for many of us.

It’s been a hard week because it’s a reminder of so many things.

A reminder that the ancient wound of racism, supremacy, and violence (in thought and in action) is wide open and still festering in this country.

A reminder that our current President does not stand (nor take a stand) firmly rooted in esteemable morals and good judgment.

A reminder that even our family, friend, and acquaintance groups may be divided in themselves about how (if at all) to respond or react to this.

This week has been a reminder of so much personal and collective pain, a reminder of so many deeply entrenched, destructive systemic issues that seem to have no solution.

You may be feeling overwhelmed and wanting to withdraw from social media, the news, even from folks in your life. This is okay…

You may be feeling righteous anger and planning to show up at counter protests or peaceful demonstrations. This is okay…

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You may be feeling compelled to act in social media conversations, to post, to write, to do something to show your stance and to influence the opinions of those around you. This is okay…

You may not know how you feel or even how or if you want to respond to anything that’s happening right now. This is okay…

What I want to say to you right now is this: We all have different responses to stress and there is no right or wrong way about how to respond or how to take care of yourself in the immediate aftermath of painful, traumatic events like Charlottesville.

There is no one right way to respond. Our individual trauma histories, our varying emotional capacities, our widely diverse logistical time and physical capabilities dictate how much and in what way we can tolerate showing up for or even metabolizing stressors like what happened this week.

So please, if you’re feeling a pressure to act or respond or be a certain way, remember to check in with yourself and see what your capacity and what your boundaries are around this.

Only you can know what’s good and right and true for you right now whether this is tuning into the news, tuning out to the news, having conversations about what’s happening in America, being on or off social media, or withdrawing and tending to your heart and soul and your small corner of the world.

To that end, because self-care is critical for us in times like these, I wanted to provide a round-up of self-care articles and resources (some of them mine from the archives, some of them from others) that you can explore for ideas about how to take care of yourself right now:

And, with this being said, I think that, for many of us, along with a need for self-care there’s a dual compulsion to want to do something, anything, to help, to fix, to address the grievous wound that has been opened. And that’s a beautiful impulse. I join you in that.

And it’s sometimes hard to know how we can show up, what actions will make a difference, and where we should spend our limited time and energy. Or, quite frankly, what even we’re capable of doing right now.

So, in addition to a list of self-care articles, I also wanted to provide you with a list of actionable resources and articles that can help you assess and determine how you might like to do something and contribute and play a part in mending and healing what you can:

In times like these, it’s important that we take care of ourselves, and that we take care of each other in whatever ways seem possible for each of us.

I’ve heard from a lot of people this week about their heightened anxiety levels, being retriggered because of their own histories of oppression and personal experience with family abuse, or feeling confused about how to own and look at their privilege and use it in a way that actually helps.

Please know that all of this is normal and natural. Anxiety, overwhelm, anger, sadness, disappointment, and fear — these are all normal and natural and appropriate responses to what’s happening in our country right now.

We are living in very challenging times plainly seeing and feeling painful, social systemic wounds that, perhaps, many of us with privilege haven’t had to confront or live with so acutely yet.

Please understand: I don’t have the answers.

Instead, I join you in the question of how to best help in the small ways I can, including continuing to own and understand my own White Privilege, taking personal action to eradicate racial injustice, and to do this as I labor in my daily life and tend to my corner of the world in Berkeley, California.

This post is less an article than it is a letter from me to you, wanting you to know that I’m in it with you, that I’m thinking of you, that I have a couple of resources that might feel helpful for you.

But most of all to let you know that we’re all in this together. I’ll keep trying to do what I can to be of support to you as these weeks, months, and years unfold.

And so, I wonder, how are you doing? How’s your heart been in this past week? What and who has been supporting you in moving through your feelings about Charlottesville? Leave me a message in the comments below. I’d love to know how you’re doing in your corner of the world.

And, until next time, please, remember to take good care of yourself.

Warmly, Annie

 

 

(Disclaimer: This article and accompanying content (links, etc) is for informational and discussion purposes only and should not be construed as psychotherapy or psychotherapeutic advice of any kind. Annie Wright Psychotherapy assumes no liability for use or interpretation of any information contained in this post. The information contained in this post is intended for discussion purposes only and should not be an alternative to obtaining professional consult from a licensed mental health professional in your state based on the specific facts of your clinical matter. Annie Wright is licensed to practice psychotherapy in the State of California only.)

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