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The illusion of intimacy in times of cruelty

The illusion of intimacy in times of cruelty
The illusion of intimacy in times of cruelty

The reality current situation is brutally revealing, and without the possibility of assimilation, a world where the intimate and the public are, like never before, disrupted. The calamity to which the Covid-19 pandemic pushed us, the effects of which continue to colonize our daily lives, made us the limits of reality were pushed to an abyss and cruelty was established as the prevailing form of connection, cruelty that today governs us and uses social networks and words as weapons.

Reality is a singular and collective construction. It is not about finding a balance, but rather about sustaining the tension between both constructions.

Current intimacy bears the mark of this new era, where there is a marked overexposure of himself; This model generates a dislocation between the limit of what is intimate and what can be in the public domain.

Who Did you imagine the world we currently live in? Whocould you predict it? It is common to hear today from our patients that we are “living in a movie that we already saw” with state slogans, similar to the military dictatorship, that proclaim that “shrinking the state is enlarging the nation.”

A world in which we are victims of the destruction of some of our constitutional rights and where institutional cruelty is taken to its maximum expression when uttered by a president.

All this in a context where wealth is ruthlessly concentrated in a few hands to the detriment of many today subjected to extreme poverty. This continuous push towards dehumanization turns the other into a thing, a mere object, where anything is possible when it comes to degrading, using networks, virtuality and big data to violate or distress. Complex scenes worthy of a horror film that we witness with a mixture of disbelief and dread, and that we try to naturalize in different ways, even appealing to a kind of temporary dementia sustained in the passion for ignorance, probably because it is the only way we find to digest a reality that is certainly adverse.

History shows that there can be a better future and that, sooner or later, these cycles end and that it is possible to restore love, tenderness, sanity and finally re-establish a temporality that enables the past and projects us again towards a future. future that breaks this continuous present that distresses us. This will be possible if we give up part of our narcissism so that some of the hatred and cruelty dissipate..

The sign of this time calls us to wake up and seek knowledge as the only possible horizon.

We need to return to some of the old routine, simply because we need the illusion of everyday continuity. This will sustain us against the changes proposed by this “other reality” that is virtual reality, often used ideologically and which is imposed on us like a virus.

Great challenges lie ahead for humanity. Are we on the eve of a subjective leap that modifies our way of constructing reality? In a short time we will know. The truth is that intimacy as we knew it no longer exists. Intimacy became an illusion in a world that is today transparent and has diffuse limits.

We enter without anesthesia into the privacy of others. Social networks make this non-intimacy visible, this need to show oneself and dive into the world of others. It will be imperative to work again on the concepts of public and private. Start thinking if we are the ones who voluntarily agree to expose our private life, or if we are led unconsciously. We pay with pieces of our privacy every time we “accept” a new page or application on our cell phone. Even our search engines constantly build algorithms that predict and promote what we need, buy, think and want. Google became a new god, a new oracle or artificial consciousness to ask infinitely. We are continually categorized and locked into profiles that tell us who we are, what we should do to improve our lives, and thus we are colonized without any ethical distinction.

What consequences does all this have for our psyche? The frameworks of our intimacy offer us security, our psyche is also built on it. This generalized non-intimacy produces exaltation in us at first, but then anguish enters the scene when we are unable to recognize the limits on which we can rely to address our relationship with the world and with others.

Social media can be a blessing or a punishment, lifting us up or breaking us down with surprising ease. Many believe that what is not on the networks does not exist. The same thing happens with search engines with their algorithms and bots, they expand our freedom, but they also appear one step away from subjective colonization, because these new realities have a diffuse intimacy, a diffuse construction of limits..

Psychoanalysis proposes a construction of an analytical space where intimacy is present, to the point of being the greatest intimacy that a subject can build, it is another language that inscribes the subject to think and listen to themselves.

Today we have games, education, work, commerce, therapy, sex and friendships available in the virtual field, in what we call the “other reality.” It is up to us to know how to deal with this new reality. A wonderful time where the new never ceases to surprise us but also implies the challenge of rethinking ourselves in these new coordinates. Let us work singularly and collectively to overcome this era that sweeps away intimacy, exposing us to the cruelty of the era.

Finally, I want to emphasize that intimacy is, like any construction, an illusion, but it is necessary to cement the new edges together so that our mental health is possible.

Psychoanalyst. Clinical psychologist. Graduate in Psychology (UBA). President and founding member of the Argentine Mental Health Association (AASM). Founder and Coordinator of the Evening Day Hospital, Mental Health Division Hospital Gral. de Agudos “Dr. T. Álvarez”. Member of the Mental Health Law Review Body. Life member of the Word Federation for Mental Health (WFMH). Author of publications in the field of Mental Health.

Source: Ambito

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