Here’s a question for you, now that we’re a little halfway through this mishigas of a year: what does “normal” even mean anymore?
I won’t quote dictionaries at you; you know better than anyone else what normal looks like for you. As humans, we’re simple creatures of habit. We get into routines, we set our own boundaries, we develop preferences and nurture them. We create our normal, settle in and get comfortable — and then along comes a pandemic to throw everything into the air like so many juggling balls.
We talk about shame in the singular quite a bit, don’t we? Sometimes we partner it with guilt (though, as we’ve said before, we do make sure to separate the two), but shame rarely works alone. That’s because it tends to create more problems and delay healing others.
Here are some studies that tell the tale — or some important new pieces of it: