Dear ESTD members,

Boundaries, a well-known term in our world, has added new nuances in these last months. Since 11th March 2020, our world, both personal and professional, has changed. The COVID 19 pandemic infection has impacted psychotherapy practice all over the world. Boundaries, a delicate construct of our everyday work, is being redefined almost daily. Therapeutic sessions and professional meetings have gone from face to face encounters to virtual meetings employing a variety of different media tools. We have had to quickly adapt to the constrictions of isolation whilst keeping in mind our role as mental health practitioners. It is a complex and difficult situation where all of us as clinicians or researchers need to gather our strength and try to support each other – to not get overwhelmed and continue the work.  

As human beings, we also experience all the range of emotions brought about by the pandemic threat with a potential to affect each of us, especially if we are physically vulnerable. We are all aware of the necessary procedures to keep us healthy – sanitary measures, social distancing, mental health hygiene – and we are all equipped with tools to manage stress and consecutive dysregulation.

A group of ESTD mentors is working to create some free videos in order to help clinicians to improve their toolbox regarding techniques in self-regulation, coping skills, etc. We hope they will be released as soon as possible and posted on the website along with other resources. It is a time of support and collaboration among different Societies worldwide and we appreciate the efforts, openness and resources developed by our EMDR Europe colleagues. 

In accord with safety procedures, many workshops and conferences were cancelled so we now need to focus more on developing alternative ways for teaching, including platforms and recorded materials.

Our Italian colleagues came with the suggestion of gathering specific materials developed in each country related to this emergency. We would really appreciate the input of Country Representatives regarding this topic.

ESTD, as a professional community, express the deepest feelings of compassion for the very complex and painful situation in Italy and Spain specifically and all of the other countries who may yet find themselves overwhelmed. It is our hope that together we can expand our resilience and contribute to a better mental health in our communities.

Best regards for all,
Take care!

Anca Vilma Sabau, MD

President, ESTD