Sunday, June 16, 2024

‘Covid-19 separates us socially’, vaccine and health are tearing friends and families apart

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Maria Gill
Maria Gill
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Tensions, arguments, aggression… Discussions about vaccination and the health card sometimes became taboo topics with friends or family. “Southwest” readers attest

To deal with the coronavirus epidemic, vaccination is one of the government’s tools of action. If more than 47 million French people received at least one dose and 41 million had a full vaccination schedule, the campaign still had refractories. And this topic can prove to be conflicting within the family or among friends, and even more so since the implementation of the health card.

Many of our readers responded to Call for Testimonies “Will the vaccination and health card debate tear your families apart?” ” Most reported tensions or aggression on the part of relatives or colleagues. Hubert, a sixty-year-old resident of La Rochelle, is very clear on this subject: “I am one of those people who no longer invite their unvaccinated friends home, and I accept no invitation from those in the same situation.”

‘We avoid the subject’

Isabelle, at Dax, admits that she’s had to adjust to some of her antioxidant friends without taking mileage. “I invite them home alone and not at the same time with other people who are less comfortable in their choice, or go into their house. I no longer call them to take part in certain outings, like restaurants for example. They know that and they do not live this new situation very well, but it is their choice.” We avoid the topic as much as we can, and if it’s about the rugs, we make fun of it. Right now it’s going well but we feel that if everyone doesn’t put in the effort at it, an argument can break out very easily.”

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“We got away”

In Clément, who lives in Semussac in Charente-Maritime, the vaccine and the health card became taboo subjects, as did religion and politics. The 27-year-old does everything to avoid talking about it to avoid breaking friendships or professional relationships. But sometimes it is a waste of time.

The epidemic is dangerous to health, and it is also harmful to human relationships

“The topic is back on the table. Some people blame us for vaccination, others question, hesitate to do so and few encourage vaccination. For my part, I am neither for nor against, but I would like to get out of the epidemic one day to finally resume normal life. Unfortunately, We have moved away a little from some friends because of the health crisis and especially regarding the issue of the health card… In addition to the fact that the epidemic is dangerous to health, it is also harmful in human relations. It is better to ignore the topic if you want to get along with everyone.”

Relatives are ‘divisive’

Kristen, a 50-year-old from Bayonne, says she was “horrified by the aggressive takeovers” around her. “I have really felt very lonely since March 2020 but now I am very tired.” “I am amazed to see the people close to me so divisive in one camp as in the other,” says Thomas, who lives in Lens in the Pyrenees-Atlantic. “Some are called sheep, others are conspirators. Half the measure and each point of view no longer have any weight. The arguments are more and more inaudible and eccentric.” […] The “sickness crisis” dislodged us physically first, and now it is distancing us from socially. “

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Delicious family meals

Estelle, a 32-year-old woman from Bordeaux, is utterly angry at her sister’s anti-fax and dreads the next family meal. “She spoke to me about freedom citing the motto of France when I oppose fraternity with her. We had to celebrate her birthday without her, and since then tensions have arisen within the family. I worry about the upcoming family reunion and especially the Christmas dinner even if it is still far away.”

Strained relationships at work

For others, the situation is not necessarily just sensitive within their own family. “I’m not vaccinated, I want to wait a bit before making my decision,” explains Leslie. I consider myself to be in an age group that is little affected by critical situations. I’m afraid that by grafting, people will forget the barrier gestures. I stay at home as much as possible. My family knows I want to wait. But for this resident of Neull-sur-Mer, Charente-Maritime, her choice is a problem in the professional environment. “I do not work in contact with the public, we are in large individual offices and I work remotely at 50%. I have the right to discuss every day, whether it is fair or not. I would like my choice to be respected. Relationships at work have become strained.”

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