Liv Tyler, the actress and daughter of Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler, felt “fear, shame and guilt” after contracting COVID-19. She isn’t alone.
Anxiety and depression have been identified as major side effects of the pandemic, which has claimed almost 400,000 lives in the United States in less than a year.
A recent study of 402 adults who survived COVID-19 found that 42 percent experienced anxiety. women reported higher scores for anxiety and depression than men.
Experts say people can feel guilty after testing positive as well as anxiety about spreading the illness to others.
Part of those emotions may stem from the fact people sometimes blame themselves for a situation in which they don’t have a lot of control, according to healthline.com.
The 43-year-old actress came down with the virus in December. She was forced to isolate away from her family and feared passing it on to them.
“I’m such a private and shy person and usually don’t share such things but this is a big one, and i feel we all need to share our stories, to share information, to gather facts and awareness and mostly to know we are not alone in this,” she wrote on Instagram, detailing her Odyssey.
“I tested positive for COVID-19 on New Year’s Eve day. Shit, I had made it all the way through 2020 keeping myself and my family safe.
“Doing everything i could to protect my wolf pack and follow the rules to protect others. Suddenly on The morn of the last day of 2020… boom it took me down,” she recounts.
“It comes on fast, like a locomotive. Owchie. With it Feelings of fear, shame and guilt swirling through you; who could you have gotten it from and who could you have infected… Terrifying.”
Liv has son Milo, 16, with former husband Royston Langdon, and a daughter Lula Rose, four, and son Sailor Gene, five, with partner Dave Gardner. Fortunately, none of them caught it from her.
“Luckily the rest of my family and bubble were negative There are so many strange elements to this sickness. It effects everyone so completely differently,” she says.
“I was so lucky and had corona light as my momma @realbebebuell called it but It floored me for 10 days in my bed.
There is the physical aspects but also emotional and psychological ones too. It F’s with your body and mind equally.
” Everyday different. Being isolated in a room alone for 10 days is trippy to say the least. Waking up to news of our capital being under attack. Was it real or the twilight zone? Ohhh no it was real!!!”
She says her children provided her with an important lift, although she was separated from them.
“I missed My babies beyond but they visited my window and called up to me and I watch them play outside. Such a gift,” she wrote.
“They sent little messages and drawings under my door. Reminders of what’s on the other side. What to get better for.
“I am so grateful to be through it.”
Stephanie Newman, a New York psychologist, has counseled a handful of people with feelings of guilt, anxiety, or fear when it comes to transmitting it to others.
She told healthline:
“People who are quarantining, they’re terrified that they will get a family member sick,” Newman told Healthline. “They worry that vulnerable relatives that live with them could catch it. It’s really hard for people with children, worried that they could get their children sick, even if their children are in a less high-risk group. Of course, none of us knows, which is why the worry is so bad.”
The rush of guilt can be almost immediate. Who did I infect? How am I going to tell everyone I had been in contact with? Did I pass it on to my family?
“”I think there are a number of layers of guilt associated with testing positive,” says Steven Wengel, MD, assistant vice chancellor for wellness at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and the University of Nebraska.
When guilt gets in the way of functioning normally, it becomes a problem. Dr. Cates warns. It can also lead to depression and anxiety. When this occurs, it may be time to seek help, according to medical experts.