ATLANTA - When the election that just will not seem to end is finally over, Emory School of Medicine and Grady Hospital psychologist Dr. Nadine Kaslow says, about half of Americans will be relieved, the other half crushed.
"There's disappointment, there's anger," Dr. Kaslow says. "People are incredulous right now."
To move forward, she says, we will need less shouting and more listening.
"I think too many relationships have been really been hurt by this: family relationships, kids and their parents, differing couples, friendships falling apart," she says. "I think we need to get clear, what are our values? If one of our values is our relationships, then we need to figure out how to hold onto them, and nurture them, even with the differences we have."
To salvage some relationships, she says, you may have to agree to disagree or focus on the interests you share in common that are more important than your differences.
"Unfortunately, there are relationships where the differences have become so big, because they reflect very different values, that people aren't able to do either of the first two," Kaslow says. "And, sometimes people have to agree to part ways, but that can be extremely painful and difficult."
If your candidate loses, she says, try to stay focused on what is important to you.
"We need to continue to find meaning in our own lives, to stand up for what we believe, regardless of who's in power," she says. "But we also need to do things that are sort of meaningful and pleasurable in our lives, to find a personal path forward, where we stand up for what we believe."