Wednesday, November 9, 2016

America Texted the World a Dick Pic Last Night, So Now What? Guest Blogger Francine Cournos, M.D. Weighs In

Every now and then, you need your mom. I'm extremely fortunate that mine is still alive, still of sound mind and body at age 71, and working full time as a public health physician and psychiatrist. Frankly, I've never needed my mother and a shrink more than I do today, so I asked her to write a guest blog. I've made the same request of her on several other occasions like here on couples therapy, here on accepting what's possible, and here on 70 things she's learned by age 70.

Those of you who know and love my mother know she always has a comforting and insightful word for everything and everyone. Here's what she has to say about the country we woke up to this morning, slightly edited by O.H.M. for clarity:

What this Election Has Taught Me

Like most hard-core citizens of New York City, I live in a bubble that could not imagine any viable path by which Donald Trump could become president. So last night was a time of shock and mourning.

After I got up today, I felt tempted to crawl back into bed and catch up with my sleep, but then I realized this would be the wrong response. Depression and helplessness is not the answer. As Hillary Clinton said in her concession speech, we must continue to fight for the values and outcomes we believe in, no matter what the setbacks.

Now I see that we have to fight even harder.

Human beings are capable of so much ugliness. History has shown us that repeatedly. But on balance, and ever so slowly, we have moved in the direction of a less violent and more transparent and tolerant world.

I take the results of this election as a wake up call that it’s time to do more to advocate for saving our planet, reducing violence in all of its forms, curbing the abuses of global corporations, ensuring that people have meaningful and adequately reimbursed opportunities for employment, and reckoning with all of our conscious and unconscious prejudices.

Trump has promised his constituency that we can go back to an earlier era when the country was whiter and had better paying jobs in manufacturing, mining, and a host of other industries. But we can only go forward. With a single party now in charge of all branches of the federal government, all of the disappointments that will follow from Trump’s unrealistic promises will fall on them. And there will be a next time to vote. 

In the meantime, I’ve learned that donating money to the causes I believe in is just not enough. I’m going to get my ass in gear and start putting my time and energy into these same causes. I’m going to enjoin all the like-minded people I know to do the same. That’s what this election has taught me.

Fight on!

A serious hot mess. Listening to HRC's concession speech, alone in my car this morning.


  1. This made me cry even more. I'm ready to fight on.

  2. Your mom's a genius. Thanks for sharing this!

  3. Thank you, Dr. Cournos! This has been a traumatic experience for so many of us. Like you, I want to choose fight, not flight. Let's build each other up so we may have the strength that it will surely take.


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