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Crisis, Corona and Cohesiveness in Families

Find ways to adjust conflict to better cope

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As a family therapist in Israel, with expertise working with single parent families, I have dealt with many stressful situations involving victims of terrorism, immigration and Holocaust survivors. 

In the Corona pandemic, I have been supervising online the mental health staff of Ezer Mizion, an Israeli health support organization, offering medical and social support services.

Family violence has increased during this period of social distancing, and hence family conflict resolution is very important. My advice to parents is that while it is best to avoid conflict in the presence of children, some conflict, if conducted and resolved in a constructive fashion, will give children tools for dealing with future disputes. 

Parents should also avoid blaming their spouse, and instead talk about how their partner’s behaviour affects them: “It is hurtful to me when you act in such a manner.” Such an approach will permit an ongoing dialogue in which mutual consideration and consequences of one’s actions can enable successful conflict resolution.

To promote openness in children, parents should avoid being a “super parent,” and profess to their own anxieties and mistakes. At the same time, they should continue to set limits and provide a sense of confidence and security to their children.

I recommend that before bedtime, couples review the day, its successes and difficulties, and set up a timetable for the family for the following day. Activities such as virtual talks with friends and grandparents, as well as family discussions and activities, should be scheduled. Individual talks with children about their concerns and anxieties should be implemented.

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An outline is very important in this time of tension and unpredictability, and can alleviate and reduce stress. It is also advised that parents monitor their children’s exposure to the media and ongoing reports of the pandemic, and only allow children to turn to reliable sources of information. Some exposure to ongoing news is important in order to cope with reality, but too much or too little exposure to ongoing events will only increase anxiety and uncertainty.

Solly Dreman is Professor Emeritus in Ben Gurion University of the Negev’s Department of Psychology. He was a Fulbright Scholar at the Langley Porter Neuropsychiatric Institute, School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco in 1977-78.

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Thank you for choosing TheJ.Ca as your source for Canadian Jewish News.

We do news differently!

Our positioning as a Zionist News Media platform sets us apart from the rest. While other Canadian Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas, TheJ.Ca is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.

We revealed the incursion of anti-Israel progressive elements such as IfNotNow into our communities. We have exposed the distorted hateful agenda of the “progressive” left political radicals who brought Linda Sarsour to our cities, and we were first to report on many disturbing incidents of Nazi-based hate towards Jews across Canada.

But we can’t do it alone. We need your HELP!

Our ability to thrive and grow in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters like you.

Monthly support is a great way to help us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make to support Jewish Journalism.

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