Covid Update Spring 2021
As we have now passed the year marker when the coronavirus first became a reality for us all, impacting our worlds and curtailing and limiting our capacity to live our lives as we would want to, we can look back and acknowledge that the experience has evoked for us all some powerful emotions. We have lived with challenges and uncertainty and there has been a necessity to adapt and change in an unprecedented way. Just as we became used to living simply, in relative isolation we were asked to embrace the world again but with staggeringly disarming consequences which lead to the ‘Tier system’ and then the limitations of a further ‘Lockdown’ from which we are now slowly emerging. As the national program of vaccinations steams ahead, schools returned just before the Easter break and now work and social spaces are opening again, posing, along with increasing choices and freedom, a different set of concerns and situations to navigate. Much still feels ambiguous and it is not always clear how best to respond to the expectations of others, or our own desires to be more with friends and family. The pace of change for some people still feels slow, and they want to be living life more fully. For others engaging with people, even at a distance evokes fear, and they want to feel that it is acceptable to pace themselves and emerge into the world gently. For all there is still uncertainty about what may evolve and there is the need to respect others and their way of navigating a way forward as they begin to be with others again.
At Riverside we are aware that for some this ‘Unlocking’ process is one that provokes anxieties about how to reintegrate; we have got used to our own company and that of a few select ‘others’. It is important that individuals feel able to take things at a pace they feel comfortable with, allowing themselves the time they need. We all need to have a space to process what the experience of this past year means to us personally. As a society we have yet to understand the full impact of the pandemic but we as a service are aware that the added pressures, uncertainty, fear, loneliness, and loss inherent in the situation, has brought about a mental health crisis alongside a health and financial one. The additional strains placed on us all has increased levels of stress and hardship, and in many cases for those with underlying mental health issues, their condition has been exacerbated by the situation. We at Riverside want to be available to those who have been most effected by the impact of this last year and need extra support to negotiate a way forward. Riverside has been supporting the mental health of people in Henley and the surrounding area for over 30 years. We are here to support those from the age of 12 years, and we have no upper age limit. Please do get in contact if you feel having a safe and confidential ‘space’ could be of value to you at this time and please remember that cost should not be a barrier to getting the help you need. We appreciate for many finances are tight and we will definitely take this into consideration when negotiating a fee.
You can find out how to arrange counselling here but if you would like to find out more first you can contact us via our ‘Drop-In’ service here In line with government guidelines, we are continuing to offer both online and phone counselling and will gradually return to working face to face when appropriate and possible. We will continue to offer mediated counselling where appropriate for some individuals.
Affordable fees and bursary sessions are made possible by donations from trusts, grants and fundraising, on which we are dependent to keep the service sustainable and viable. Please do visit our ‘support us’ page to see how you can help us increase capacity, so we can meet the increase in demand.
We also have details of resources on our website which you can access to support your mental wellbeing on our ‘Other Useful Resources Page’.
Some articles and tips on managing during the Coronavirus pandemic
Managing anxiety | Top tips on how to manage anxiety from the NHS, click here to read the article
Psychological Tips on How to Survive your Family, click here to read the article
Looking after your mental health during the Coronavirus outbreak | Mental Health Foundation, click here to read the article
Tavistock Relationships www.tavistockrelationships.org/free-services, 020 7380 1960 | You can apply for their totally free “Building Relationships for Stronger Families” programme
http://www.flagdv.org.uk | You can apply for a referral form for free legal advice appointments for victims of Domestic Violence