IN MY ORBIT: "Coronaphobia" Is the Newest COVID-Related Side Effect

AP Photo/Ng Han Guan

According to Governor Gavin Newsom, California is supposed to fully reopen on June 15. As shifty as Hair Gel has been, I have no idea what that means exactly, and I have done what I please, as have many other people, especially those who have the privilege to live in the counties that are fed up with this man and his twisted version of leadership.

Orange, Ventura, and Riverside Counties are near me, and have been pretty much fully open for months now, especially the churches. I have attended a new church since January, because I refused to start my new year doing church on Zoom or wearing a mask. This new church decided back in August 2020 that they would actually follow the science and reopen their doors for outside and in-person worship. They did it safely, and followed COVID protocols; but gathering in person was the priority, and they made it happen, as did other churches across the state, in defiance of so-called health protocols that had little to nothing to do with science.

From the restaurants where I chose to eat, to the small businesses I frequented, I have taken my business outside of Los Angeles in order to not only save money (Los Angeles County is one of the highest-tax counties in the State), but also to find “Normal” in a state that wants to make the pandemic and all its restrictions the New Normal. In the Summer of 2020, I escaped to Arizona, because they were less restrictive than California and were not treating people like disease vectors. In February, I went to Florida for CPAC, and it was great to be among gatherings of people, as opposed to the sound of a hollow hall with distanced people, or an empty sidewalk. There is a power and an energy when people gather and come together, and there is also a joy resident. I suspect this is part of the reason the elites tried to destroy this for us—that is, unless you were part of Antifa or BLM.

Thanks to Gavin Newsom being Recalled, California is finally being dragged toward reopening. What amazes me is there are people who mourn and even fear returning to “normal.” They like the ability to wear a mask, not bother with crowds, and like having restrictions placed on others. CNN and the New York Times decided to talk to them, and it’s as awful as you would think it would be.

For all the people who are clamoring to get back out in the world post-vaccine, there are plenty who are saying, “nope, we aren’t ready.”

Even with science of the vaccine on their side — and liberating new CDC guidance on masks issued last week — it’s about what people are comfortable doing.

Getting on a plane, going to concerts, shopping for groceries in person or going to the movies are some of the things that feel uncomfortable to some as people get vaccinated and the virus continues to claim lives.

CNN spoke with people who are not changing the way they are living even after being vaccinated. They told us why their “new normal” looks a lot like pandemic life.

The article goes on with individual stories across the country, and makes sure you know that the photos of the interviewees were taken remotely. Even CNN is conscious that these people need their space and kept their distance.

Oh, please.

This is a sad reality, and I know people just like them. Wearing masks in outdoor spaces when people are nowhere near. Driving alone in their car while still masked. Anxiety over people who do not have masks on, or giving those people dirty looks or the side-eye.

It’s almost painful to watch their eyes dart around, their bodies tense up, and them scurry away back to the safety of their car or home… wherever their safe space is that doesn’t involve breathing air with others.

The New York Times did a similar story about people who refuse to ditch their mask, even though they are fully vaccinated.

Whenever Joe Glickman heads out for groceries, he places an N95 mask over his face and tugs a cloth mask on top of it. He then pulls on a pair of goggles.

He has used this safety protocol for the past 14 months. It did not change after he contracted the coronavirus last November. It didn’t budge when, earlier this month, he became fully vaccinated. And even though President Biden said on Thursday that fully vaccinated people do not have to wear a mask, Mr. Glickman said he planned to stay the course.

In fact, he said, he plans to do his grocery run double-masked and goggled for at least the next five years.

Even as a combination of evolving public health recommendations and pandemic fatigue lead more Americans to toss the masks they’ve worn for more than a year, Mr. Glickman is among those who say they plan to keep their faces covered in public indefinitely.

For people like Mr. Glickman, a combination of anxiety, murky information about new virus variants and the emergence of an obdurate and sizable faction of vaccine holdouts means mask-free life is on hold — possibly forever.

“I have no problem being one of the only people,” said Mr. Glickman, a professional photographer and musician from Albany, N.Y. “But I don’t think I’m going to be the only one.”

From the comments on this NY Times Twitter thread, he is unfortunately right.

I am convinced this is a mental illness. Not unlike what is happening with detransitioners. They start or complete their transition to the opposite gender, then realize their root problem wasn’t being the wrong gender, the root is depression, sexual abuse, dysphoria, anxiety, or other disorders that were incorrectly diagnosed, or not diagnosed at all. Instead, they were given the answer of gender transition, and they realized too late that it was not the solution at all.

I believe the same is occurring with this pandemic. It has exposed deeper-seated emotional and psychological issues in people that are now making themselves evident.  As the world returns to normal—or at least tries to—these individuals resist this return, and even develop an adversarial stance against it.

Of course, mental health professionals are on the case, and have already defined COVID pandemic-related mental issues as “Coronaphobia”.

We can now add “coronaphobia” to that list. The researchers who helped coin the term late last year say coronaphobia is a new type of anxiety specific to COVID-19. Here’s everything you need to know about it, including how to determine if your anxiety rises to the level of this disorder and what to do if it does.

After analyzing nearly 500 studies that addressed the alarm and panic people were feeling during the pandemic, researchers defined coronaphobia as “an excessive triggered response of fear of contracting the virus causing COVID-19, leading to accompanied excessive concern over physiological symptoms, significant stress about personal and occupational loss, increased reassurance and safety seeking behaviors, and avoidance of public places and situations, causing marked impairment in daily life functioning.”

While these individuals may well survive, and appear to be doing just fine staying in pandemic mode, that spirit of fear, just like anger, and other negative emotions, is going to destroy them. If not mentally or emotionally, then physically. The missed relationships, missed opportunities, and missed healthy interactions from their being afraid of a virus will take their toll. COVID still has a 98 percent survival rate even without a vaccine. They are choosing an early death because they are afraid of life.

Another group of people for whom the pandemic has done nothing but harm.

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