Friendship is a beautiful thing—childhood friends, friends from school or college days, friendships formed through work, and other stages of life.
As we look toward 2021, many of us may take time to reflect on resolutions and intentions to carry into the upcoming new year. For those who struggle with disordered eating and poor body image, this time of year may be especially challenging due to the constant rhetoric and messages around programs designed for weight loss. If you are in recovery from an eating disorder, diet culture’s strong presence during this time may activate parts of you to feel ambivalent around your recovery goals. This is normal and this does not mean you are failing for having those thoughts. You are not alone!
The holidays can be a tough time of year, especially for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, pansexual, transgender, genderqueer, queer, intersexed, agender, asexual, and ally community who experience homophobia during holiday gatherings. We all need to feel physically and emotionally safe, to feel connected within relationship. If these elements are not present or lacking in family gatherings, individuals within the LGBTQIA+ community can feel especially vulnerable to rejection which can exacerbate underlying mental health symptoms such as depression and anxiety.
What CAN parents do:
Keep in mind, during COVID we need to be gentle with ourselves and perhaps allow for more screen time for our kids as that is often the way they are connecting with friends. This, more than ever, is a time where screens allow us to stay connected.
Feeling the pressure to fit in with what one’s friends or family are doing this holiday season can be stressful! After all, it seems easier to “give in” [and conform] than to “rock the boat” and go against others’ expectations.
What may have started out as tradition may begin to feel like an overwhelming obligation. It might begin to feel as though others have control of your schedule and choices. I “have” to visit this person, then I “have” to visit that person. I “have” to make this, then I “have” to make that. I have to buy…I have to go…I have to do… !!
How often do you find yourself forgetting an important date? Perhaps a birthday, anniversary, important milestone, job interview, or medical appointment?
Within relationships, acknowledging important dates in loved one’s lives has special significance. It shows that you are thinking about them and that you care.
Celebrating special dates with a loved one can be a truly meaningful experience. It can help the other person feel loved and appreciated.
December is a month of celebration. It is also a month full of rituals and traditions.
Rituals differ from traditions in that rituals involve a series of actions that are repeated. A tradition is similar in that beliefs or behaviors are passed down, with cultural significance tied to the past; however, they do not need to be performed in a prescribed order.
The Oxford Dictionary defines the word grateful as “showing an appreciation of kindness.” Being grateful is an action whereas being thankful is a feeling. While the holidays have looked different this year, especially compared to past years, I reflect on thankfulness and choose to practice gratitude.
How often does the topic of family mental health history come up while sitting around the dinner table? I am guessing not very often! What about your family’s medical history? This topic may feel a bit more comfortable but also tends to not be discussed.
A new film that further examines the science behind teen’s emotional challenges, the interplay of social media, and most importantly, what can be done to help them build crucial skills and provide hope to families.