The Worst of Corona Trauma Is Still Ahead of Us squib

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Disaster psychologists say that emergencies have emotional phases. First comes shock, then the “we’re all in this together” honeymoon, followed by disillusionment, and ultimately recovery.

It’s the Kubler Ross stages of grief for catastrophes. But the experts have thrown out the script with COVID-19. They say untold numbers have done the shock, the “clap at 7 p.m.,” and are now stuck in the disillusionment. Others leapfrogged right past the honeymoon to anguish. No one can move forward.

Unlike any other emergency in living memory (minus the 1918 pandemic) we can’t hug, embrace, or stick together. Livelihoods and families have been destroyed and social inequalities deepened. Unlike in other events that started and stopped and devastated a clear area of the world, this is an invisible menace that continues to hit the entire globe. We do not understand the enemy, we don’t really know who is vulnerable, we don’t have a vaccine or treatment so far. We can’t even trust antibody tests.

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