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Tue Sep 15, 2020, 08:42 AM

Who needs another Zoom call? Why sending letters might help your loved ones.

Supporting friends and family who are going through a hard time used to involve meaningful chats at the local coffee shop, venting over a glass of wine on the couch or warm embraces followed by words of encouragement. Now, because of the coronavirus pandemic, those traditions are on hold.

But we can take another approach: sending handwritten letters. The old-fashioned gesture could be particularly beneficial now: The pandemic is adversely affecting Americans’ mental health, and research suggests that being contacted by letter can lower the risk of suicide. Besides, after months of remote work and virtual communication, many people might welcome a tangible alternative to yet another Zoom call. Feel awkward writing a nondigital missive? No worries, we have you covered.“[

Letters] help provide social support, even if you can’t be there with your friend or family member, holding their hand and being by their side,” says Spray, who is also the director of the Steven A. Cohen Military Family Center at NYU Langone Health.

Research indicates that such support can have a significant impact on recipients’ mental health. One study, conducted at Stanford University in the early 1970s, followed more than 800 people after they had been discharged from the hospital for depression or suicidal tendencies. One group of patients received handwritten letters from a health-care provider they knew in the five years following discharge, while the other group received no letters. Patients in the letter-receiving group had lower rates of suicide over the five-year period.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/wellness/letters-pandemic-depression-anxiety-help/2020/09/14/47b3bb3a-f3b1-11ea-b796-2dd09962649c_story.html

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Reply Who needs another Zoom call? Why sending letters might help your loved ones. (Original post)
SunSeeker Sep 2020 OP
madaboutharry Sep 2020 #1
treestar Sep 2020 #2
AllaN01Bear Sep 2020 #3
Polly Hennessey Sep 2020 #4

Response to SunSeeker (Original post)

Tue Sep 15, 2020, 08:53 AM

1. Letter writing is a lost art.

It takes effort to write a letter. Sadly, people don't want to take the time to do much of anything anymore. As a society and a culture we want everything insantly. Writing a letter and waiting for a letter in return takes patience and time.

It is a pity. Getting a hand written letter in the mail can be so uplifting. Well, uplifting when the words are kind.

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Response to SunSeeker (Original post)

Tue Sep 15, 2020, 08:55 AM

2. That's a good point

my niece was online all day for school. Then she had a church type meeting - online. It was supposed to be social, but then, it's online too and you can get sick of being in one place so long and for everything.

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Response to SunSeeker (Original post)

Tue Sep 15, 2020, 09:20 AM

3. how about good ole fashined phone calls as well ?

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Response to SunSeeker (Original post)

Tue Sep 15, 2020, 09:21 AM

4. My veterinarian is retiring,

I sent him a three-page letter (handwritten). His care of my animals over the years goes beyond a mere thank you. I could only tell him my appreciation through writing.

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