To my AAPI clients and community, know that I am grieving alongside you. It’s hard to put into words the amount of violence that we’ve witnessed this past year. The collective grief has impacted us in ways we may not know how to express.
To process an event, one has to digest the information and then allow the body and mind to react to the event. There will be feelings and thoughts about the event. It is critical that there is space for the feelings and thoughts to exist in our body and our mind so that we can gain insight about how we are personally impacted.
Culturally, Asians are taught to suppress difficult feelings, compartmentalize and move past traumatic and difficult events as quickly as possible. This will often result in difficulty with emotional regulation, self awareness, and difficulty with processing feelings. I encourage you to either seek space within your own social circle, with others from your similar background, your therapist, and/or your community. It can be helpful to witness how others grieve to allow yourself to grieve. No one grieves the same, and there is no right way to grieve.
As difficult as it may feel, we can and will get through this. It’s a bumpy and long journey ahead, but there is so much that can be done as individuals and as a community. Helpers are out there, I invite you to look for them and join them.
Resources for Processing Feelings:
Sitting with Feelings: https://www.mindfulness.org.au/sitting-with-feelings
Deep Breathing: https://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/breathing-lessons-0501124
Racial Trauma Toolkit: https://www.bc.edu/bc-web/schools/lynch-school/sites/isprc/isprc-advisory-board.html
Asian American History: https://allyconnectioncom.files.wordpress.com/2021/03/2f4f6-2006_goldmountain_curguide.pdf
Books on Asian American Experience: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/605371/minor-feelings-by-cathy-park-hong/