Home Forums COVID-19 Pandemic: Bearing Witness, Telling our Story The Personal Becomes Dangerous Review these thoughts from Deborah Tannen. Share your thoughts and comments.

Viewing 14 posts - 1 through 14 (of 14 total)
  • Author
  • #35682
    DNP Inc.

    The Personal Becomes Dangerous

    • This topic was modified 4 years, 2 months ago by DNP Inc..
    Gabriela Baker

    This discussion post really speaks to me regarding the current COVID-19 shelter in place order that we are still undergoing. It has been about a month and a half since my husband and I have decided to socially distance. Being an introvert has helped my husband to better cope with the shelter in place order. He has become comfortable staying indoors and finding ways to keep entertained. I however, find myself yearning to be outside, even if its just in my yard. I’m sure many Americans are feeling just like we are, and learning to cope with social distancing. After 9/11, many of the traveling laws changed and restrictions happened to ensure our safety. The same is happening now to ensure the public safety. Online shopping has boomed since the shelter in place order. It makes me wonder what stores will look like once they have reopened? Will many people continue to do online shopping because of it’s convenience, and how will this impact local shops? I’m sure that the future of shopping will be changed due to this virus. Also the fear of contamination and infection will be more presently on our minds whenever we see someone in public who is ill. Will this virus impact public health rules for the future, as far as anyone feeling ill will be required to wear a mask in public. All these things we anxiously await while riding out the COVID-19 crisis.

    Taron T Peebles

    The rapidity of how COVID 19 has spread and the casuality of its insidious transmission is going to be a major challenge moving forward. Universal Precautions will likely reflect use of a surgical mask for source-control as well as PPE in the present and post COVID 19 era. Questions and research regarding prevention will need to be addressed as this virus while the current problem will only remain novel until the next virulence is upon us. I belive more than ever now we will need to have a collabortive team-approach to many public health issues as well as full practice authority to address the medical complexities and challenges upon the entire healthcare spectrum.

    Mansi Patel

    This is a great discussion post. I agree with the original poster. COVID-19 has changed a lot recently in our society, as mentioned by the above post. Many families are suffering and are unable to see each other due to pandemic. People who work in healthcare are unable to spend time or visit their elderly parents in fear of transmitting the virus. “A new way being in the world” just might become our norm. Online learning or telehealth might be permanently incorporated into our health care system post virus. In a way, it could be a positive change in our system. There are times when patients are waiting for close to two or three months to see their primary health care providers in person. Telehealth can reduce wait times if the health matter is minor and does not require in-person visits. For now, we must wait and see how COVID will reconstruct our future.

    Whitney Woodard

    I find this discussion interesting now that we are on the “back end” of the COVID-19 pandemic–at least that’s what I hope. When it first started, there was this sense of “no way it’s going to get as bad as they described” and “that only happens in the movies or third world countries, not here.” Of course it did happen here and it happened big. As an ER nurse, it was horrific. I was practicing a kind of nursing that was dangerous and hopeless. And I’ll be honest, I never want to do it again. I won’t do it again (unpopular opinion I’m sure). But there were some interesting things in the way of education and communication that emerged. I found I really enjoyed distance learning and zoom meetings. They allowed me opportunities to be more present and connected with my family instead of sitting in traffic and going to in person meetings. I did not realize how much of my life was spent doing that! I did not miss the human interaction as I was faced with so much of it at work. So it’s possible that was my blessing and curse? I don’t know. But I do know that incorporating certain aspects of online learning and teleworking for meeting was extremely beneficial for my mental health.

    Savannah Sharp

    These are very thought-provoking words! Or at least they were for me! It is interesting to think about how the COVID-19 pandemic will impact humanity in the future. As it is now, everyone is caught up in trying to figure out how it affects everyone in the world at the present moment and worrying about the effects of the pandemic in the future seems unnecessary at this time (especially with the new variants showing up). However, I think there will definitely be some long-term effects that humanity will have to deal with in the after math of COVID-19. I for one have also found myself feeling uncomfortable in enclosed spaces, traveling by plane, entering other countries, and physically touching people that I do not know well (like shaking hands or hugging). I was never uncomfortable by these things before COVID-19! Every time I hear someone sneeze or cough, I automatically think about how I can distance myself from that person and fight the urge to wash my hands and cover my nose and mouth with a face mask. I have also asked myself the same question as the author of this post, “Is there any good reason to do this in person?” when thinking about class meetings and work meetings. I have become accustomed to doing these things online via Zoom not only from the comfort of my own home, but also in the comfort of knowing that I have less physical contact with others during this scary time. I am wondering if I will now forever have these thoughts and feelings or if they will fade away with time and eventually go back to the way things used to be pre- COVID.My hope is that they will fade away!

    Adrienne Nola

    “We know now that touching things, being with other people, and breathing the air in an enclosed space can be risky.”

    This pandemic has affected all of us physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. It has tested us to the core, especially those that dealt with COVID patients firsthand. Our unit was a designated covid unit and we got the most critical patients. It was devastating to hear their families cries through FaceTime, zoom, or a phone call because they’re not allowed to visit. It also affected those of us in healthcare because as much as we want to hug our families and kids, the risk of covid was so high. Our lives are forever changed. However, I believe that there’s always a small silver lining. This pandemic I believe has showed us that a simple phone call can mean so much. It has taught me that simple things are all we ever need in this life. It also taught me that life is fleeting so we shouldn’t spend it on senseless things. I’m not sure how long it will take to go back to “normal” or if we ever will, but I know for a certain that if we all work together as a society, there’s nothing we can’t accomplish.

    Sintya Sintya

    We all have been affected by the current COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic affects us as a whole. However, the impact of the pandemic and its consequences are felt differently depending on our status as individuals and as members of society. While some try to adapt to working online, homeschooling their children, and ordering food via Instacart, others have no choice but to be exposed to the virus while keeping society functioning. Our different social identities and the social groups we belong to determine our inclusion within society and, by extension, our vulnerability to epidemics. As a frontline worker and working as a nurse, social distance hit differently, we are needed to be working in the hospital and help patients who are affected by COVID-19. The work environment was hectic and fast-paced. All the work was done with a conscious effort to maintain the integrity of our PPE protocols. The work was heavy physical labor as patients were turned for proning and also from side-to-side to prevent decubiti. This resulted in a very uncomfortable situation inside our scrubs as the heat built up under the PPE. It was also hard to breathe through our N95 masks (if it wasn’t hard to breathe then you had a poorly fitting mask that was not protecting you). There were frequent shortages of PPE and some of what we used was of dubious quality.

    To others, social distancing has separated us from other parts of society. This led others to feel very much disconnected from their friends and or loved ones. Humans are made to be out and about and socialize with beings on Earth. These unfortunate events have led many people to be disconnected from society. This has led others to cloud their judgment and may wonder and ask, “How long will my life be on pause?” No one exactly knows when the pandemic will end or if it will ever end. One thing that I do know we all must work together to fight this pandemic.


    I agree with the author that COVID 19 has impacted significantly to our society. From school closures to devastated industries and millions of jobs lost, the social and economic costs of the pandemic are many and varied. Covid-19 is threatening to widen inequalities everywhere, undermine progress on global poverty and clean energy, and more. Among the worst hit are workers in the informal economy, young people and women. Any economic recovery will likely be uneven, leading to greater inequality in the coming years. For a number of families, it could mean making big changes in everyday routines due to financial hardships. For other families, it could mean raised anxiety in children, tension in parenting relationships or general fear. Many parents, while working from home, have to take care of their children with restricted caregiver resources as well as support their children’s education through home schooling or remote learning provided by their schools.


    “The personal becomes dangerous” thoughts remind us of our history, not only as healthcare providers but also about the vulnerability the human race faces. The moment someone thinks is safe can be the most vulnerable moment in their life. The events on 9/11 and the flu pandemic of 1918, as well as the 2008 economic crisis, are great examples to teach us about the vulnerability we all faced. Nowadays, touching things, breathing the air in an enclosed space, and even being around some people can be risky. It is events such as the recent pandemic that call us to redefine our socials life, our social skills, what is acceptable in society, what to expect in a formal interview, and the professional protocols; everything is constantly changing and being redefined. The “normal” has changed to the “new normal”. In-person it is not required for issues and events such as going to the doctor, assessments can be done online, through messages, and through video. With the pandemic, the world was forced to change; whether people were ready or not, whether the world wanted or not, changes needed to be made to save the world. The thoughts on “The personal becomes dangerous” remind us that yet vulnerability will always be present, resilient, and the ability to adapt can always provide a new way.

    Ryan Lau

    This still holds true value two years from the start of the pandemic. Many people have become more self-conscious about meeting others in person now. This brings much awareness to the community about how something can spread so easily through common social interaction. With this instance going on, many have become scared to go outside as they are afraid of contracting an unwanted illness. In fact, this brings social anxiety and claustrophobia to greater levels as people will become unfamiliar with social interaction as they have not done much in the last few years. I agree that COVID19 has definitely impacted society as a whole and how it affected the entire world’s way of doing things. The area of social interaction has changed immensely from in-person to online. There are many pros and cons for this as we are able to communicate with multiple people at one time but we are not able to physically see or meet people in person. This allows us to connect with more people but probably leaves out feelings of emotions as we lose real-time interaction.

    Ricky Bonar

    I think this phenomenon of being more connected through safe distance is an interesting observation. One way of looking at it is that our environment is slowly but surely shaping the way we behave; it’s changing our priorities and values. Another way of looking at it is that people are generally resilient and we are simply adapting to the current climate. I feel that people are deeply inclined to seek “normal” human interactions. We crave physical touch and communicating through personal interactions. Nevertheless, it is reasonable to be reactionary to the expectation that there is an expected rise in anxiety and depression along with other psychological disturbances as many will be unable to maintain threshold of the paradox of online communication.


    The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted preexisting problems in the healthcare system and created many new ones. These problems eventually came avalanching down, overwhelming healthcare systems and organizations. The fear of spreading the virus and restricted access to medical facilities and providers forced the healthcare system to adapt and adopt alternative approaches for providing medical attention. Instead of the traditional patient-provider interaction for addressing health needs, telehealth became the norm for outpatient and primary care follow-up. For minor health concerns and follow-ups, the use of virtual communication made it possible to deliver care in a more timely, efficient, cost-friendly, and convenient manner for both the patient and provider. Some factors that affected people from accessing healthcare services, such as lack of transportation, time, and inflexible work schedule, were no longer a major impediment for those seeking medical attention. In addition, the availability and use of cell phones have made it easier for people to connect. Therefore, the pandemic showed the importance of broadband access and how its application can revolutionize healthcare delivery, especially in rural, hard-to-reach areas. Moving forward, I think it will be essential to expand broadband networks and access to remote areas and find ways to provide easy access to vulnerable and disadvantaged populations.

    Andrea M Whitchurch

    As we continue to deal with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, a “return to normalcy” creates anxieties for many about returning to public interactions. In addition, in some health care settings, it has all but been forgotten that there are many other diseases/ailments that can have similar symptoms to COVID and require medical attention, and patients can’t get seen by outpatient professionals. This creates overcrowded emergency departments and taxes those resources further. Telehealth is definitely a viable option; however, it can’t take the place of personal interactions with providers completely. For example, a patient who experiences a MI during the pandemic and is dealing with all those life changes events, anxieties, medication regimens, etc. and can’t even see their cardiologist in person for them to auscultate the heart or perform exams. This can be terrifying and lead to increased anxiety. Elderly patients who aren’t tech-savvy face difficulties with devices and broadband access, and lest we forget those who simply don’t have the means to devices bandwidth. Yes, the pandemic will have its lasting effects in almost every aspect of society and change the way that we do a lot of things, school, work, etc. but we can also adapt as we have to other things in our past and make public outings, appointments, etc. safe for everyone.

Viewing 14 posts - 1 through 14 (of 14 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.