“Stomim Only” – Online Emotional Group Discourse
Following is an interview conducted in Hebrew by Dr. Varda Silberberg with Dr. Orly Orion-Liver regarding emotional group discourse. A summary of this interview is provided in both English and Hebrew below the recorded interview.
“Stomim Only” – Online Emotional Group Discourse [Summary in English]
The coronavirus pandemic, which broke out in 2020, powerfully embodies characteristics of  VUCA world. Following this outbreak, we find ourselves in a world full of uncertainty and often even out of control. Many are experiencing difficulties enforced upon them by decisions made by those who are managing the crisis and the responding systems. People all around the world were forced into isolation, by personal and social distancing, surrounded by a variety of guidelines and alternating instructions, as a means of protection on the one hand, but with real potential for causing distress, crisis and fear of being in physical and public space, on the other.
Since 2015, I have been a member of a WhatsApp group Called “ Stomim Only “, which is a support group and consultation, intended for stoma patients and consists nearly of 100 people. During the days of the first lockdown in Israel in March, an idea arose, to meet face to face over “zoom” an application that, offers online remote video conferencing. Using my experience in during my doctorate studies, in which video conferencing was a key-mean for studying and communicating, and my experience in online group meetings, including instructing groups of professional development at the college, I invited my friends to meet over Zoom. The first meeting was very successful.
In light of the first meeting and the ongoing crisis I initiated further voluntarily online Short-term space for discourse, to be used as an environment for support, sharing and processing thoughts and emotions of having a stoma. A group of 8 women and 2 men, all of whom stoma patients with background diseases such as cancer or inflammatory bowel disease, over the age of 40, was formed for four weekly sessions.
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