This session opened with a short 5 News documentary on long covid to start with called “What is long covid COVID 19 Ruth Liptrott” Minutes : 2:30-9:50 and we continued to explore our own experiences of long covid in those that we know and also with our clients along with the impact on us. We learnt about the research into long covid being linked to an auto immune response to the infection and raised some questions about the observations we have of clients struggling to cognitively process and remember along with fatigue.
There was an observation where conditions such as ME often have a psychological link to them where as there does not seem to be any such link with COVID.
We recognised the comment from a participant on the video who said “I’m not the person I used to be” along with the comments about feeling frightened and lost as a result and how bereavement is a recurring feature in therapy.
We recognised the link of trauma to COVID and how the effect of trauma is held in the whole of our bodies.
We reviewed the article in Therapy Today (Jan 2021) “Inside the long COVID Maze” by Karen Rawden.
This article opened a discussion about the authors continuing journey with covid herself and the suggestion that “witnessing my fallibility invited my clients to see and honour their own”. The risks of over disclosing issues of self were raised and the question askes “who is this disclosure for” led to highlighting a risk of role reversal and the client taking care of the therapist. It was recognised that self awareness is generally a private process and as therapists we take the internal moment after connecting with a congruent response to consider who benefit is disclosure for before making it.
However it was recognised that the article did accept that there may come a point to withdraw from counselling as the most appropriate and ethical response to personal COVID.
An article in the current Therapy today “Generation Covid” (May 2021)
https://www.bacp.co.uk/bacp-journals/therapy-today/2021/may-2021/the-big-issue/ on the effects of COVID 19 on children and how counselling can help looked at the question of if we are storing up distress in our children to come out another day. Children are seen as generally resiliant and if they have a supportive home environment then then are likely to do well but it was recognised that not all children benefit from this. We looked at the recommendation in the article that counsellors should be placed in all schools with enhanced training in counselling for depression and the opposing view of this may not be necessary if enough funding and training were to be put into teachers so that they have the time to listen would probably be more effective.