Now that Filipino families are at home together 24/7 during the community quarantine, clashes in opinions about the COVID-19 situation are coming to light.
What do you do when senior family members insist their opinion is correct?
Early this week, celebrity host Bianca Gonzalez held another Instagram Live Kuwentuhan session on her account with family psychologist Dr. Michele Alignay who gave family and couple advice during the time of quarantine.
In their kuwentuhan session, Dr. Alignay offered a way to handle seniors who think "sila lang ang tama." The family life consultant said it begins with understanding that their attitude towards certain things cannot be changed.
"Isipin natin: they grew up in a different generation. Iba rin iyong pag-po-program ng mindset nila," Dr. Alignay said. "Kasi sometimes, the struggle is really in our heads. The struggle is 'Bakit ba sila ganoon?' Ganoon na sila. Period. We cannot do anything about how they are. Period.
"Meron kasi mga tao na very insistent. You know, they are very strong with their opinion. So, ang sasabihin ko na sa inyo, don't let them get to you. Kasi if they start getting to you, talagang sisilakbo iyong damdamin niyo.
"Kasi you want to respect them; you want to love them. Tanggapin mo na lang na ganoon sila, but don't let them get into you..."
"Minsan magkulong sa banyo, mag-scrub ka, do something for yourself"
Dr. Alignay introduced the concept of "emotional distancing." The t is to separate oneself from the tension and allow oneself to recharge away from the problem.
"Parang meron kang safe boundary," she continued. "'Pag medyo napupuno ka na, medyo dumistansiya ka nang konti para hindi ka mapuno nang punong-puno. 'Tapos, recharge ulit.
"'Tapos, pag makikipagtalo sila, kasi alam mo minsan hindi ka mananalo sa kanila, iyon iyong reality doon, e... Huwag ka na pumasok doon sa pagtatalo with the people in the home na alam mo naman na they always have to have the last say on things."
Dr. Alignay also defined emotional distancing as "love from a distance."
She related, "Mahal mo sila, pero hindi puwede sobrang dikit na magkasama kayo 24/7. Kasi alam mo, minsan, pareho lang naman iyong goal, magkaiba lang iyong ways. They want to do things their way...
"Kung sobrang — to be with them is really testing your patience, always find time to breathe and gawan mo ng self-care strategy sarili mo. Minsan magkulong ka sa banyo, mag-scrub ka. You do something for yourself. You have to recharge yourself if the people at home are testing your patience."
Practice patience instead of tolerance
Dr. Alignay also differentiated patience from tolerance. For her, patience begins when one accepts the loved one's personality.
"I believe iyong una talaga, acceptance. Kasi kapag tinanggap mo na na ganyan iyan, you will really be patient. Hindi lang patient. You will be more loving kasi tinanggap mo na, e. Kaya minsan nagiging tolerant lang tayo; ang tolerant, tinitiis. Pero ang patience, meron siya kasamang love. You're trying to embrace the person.
"Since we are in the relationship together, hindi naman natin pagtitiisan iyong partner natin o iyong mga kasama natin sa bahay. Isipin na lang natin na tanggapin na lang natin sila nang buo. 'Wala ako magagawa to change them, but what I can do is to accept them the way they are and change also how I deal with them.'"
"Kapag hindi mo kaya mag-deal with them, doon ka gagawa ng other tactics, ng other hacks."