As a family therapist using activism as a tool has always been integral in my work. Whether I’m working with individuals, couples, or families activism is one of the go to tools that we work on when talking about fighting against injustice. Some of the situations where it comes up include wanting to teach and […]
As a family therapist using activism as a tool has always been integral in my work. Whether I’m working with individuals, couples, or families activism is one of the go to tools that we work on when talking about fighting against injustice. Some of the situations where it comes up include wanting to teach and share the values of social justice with our children, protect our partner from an unjust situation, or defend some aspect of our unique family identity. I thought it was especially a necessity to talk about now because of the children and families that need our support today.
Each time I open up facebook I see a more horrifying news story of how the government is abducting babies, children, and teenagers from their parents due to the Trump administration’s new policies at the US-Mexico border. It is inhumane, traumatic, and disgusting to separate children from their parents at the border. It doesn’t take a therapist to know the extreme trauma this causes for children and their families. I’m sure many of you are going through a similar process of feeling horrified, helpless, and angry as you hear the news. So what’s the next step? How do we go from helpless and horrified into action?
Even as I write this there is discussion about an executive order being signed to hopefully end this torture. But even then what is the reunification plan? What will be done about the trauma that has already been caused? What will be done to make sure people are treated humanely?
Here’s a good article that has some easy action steps you can take: Here’s What You Can Do to Help Immigrant Children Being Separated From Their Parents at the Border-Donate, march, and more tips from the local ACLU.
For many of us, we just can’t understand how anyone could think that this makes any sense but then we also are aware that racism and ignorance exists. I’m curious as to how you handle it if someone in your family, partner’s family, or life thinks this or another injustice can be justified. Have you ever posted something and they make a comment that just makes you want to vomit? What do you do then? Do you and your partner deal with it together? Do you ignore it or deal with it as a family?
One way of dealing with that is involving yourself in activism for the immediate crisis and in addition creating a plan to open up dialogue and educate the person. As interfaith, multicultural, and multiracial couples and families one of the most important lessons that we can learn together and teach our children is how to be part of creating change. Activism is a key step in that process.
To fighting against injustice,