These articles reflect the pathologies underneath our thriving society:
For years there has been talk within Public Health/Legislative circles about the lack of parity between services/insurance coverage for physical health and similar resources for mental health. Providers and lawmakers have not chosen to take the threat seriously. The isolation, forced ongoing contact and anxiety brought on by Covid-19 together have drastically demonstrated cracks not only in the safety net but in fundamental cohesiveness in interpersonal relationships worldwide. This is serious. While local efforts are imperative, local efforts will need to show success before efforts to coordinate larger spheres of cooperative effort can begin.
The effects of this phenomena are being experienced in countries both developed and less-developed around the globe. It is not surprising that rates of alcohol consumption, marijuana usage and domestic violence are skyrocketing. The next wave will be the numbers of homicides (suicides cloaked with partners or perceived enemies), mental health confinements and overdoses occurring all over the country and world.
It has been said before, one needs more preparation and planning to obtain a driver’s license than to obtain a marriage license. For years people have begun cohabitating without the benefit of marriage thereby pre-empting options for counseling, familial interaction or legal overview. The TED talk done by Sue Klebold explains how even a doting mother can miss the signs of a suicidal/homicidal son who is really struggling with life issues. How will public health officials begin to reconcile these many disparities with feasible solutions. Will we see solutions that respond to the needs of the people rather than the needs of the stock market?
I’ve been privileged to be a cross-cultural counselor. This presupposes that you have good familiarity with the culture you are working with. As we implement these tactics to work through this crisis with our population, we will need to have an eye on commonalities that can be shared and communicated with practitioners in across the globe. Perhaps we will learn how important it is to create parity and seek ways to be sensitive to people’s needs.