Corona vaccines may provoke feelings of jealousy among individuals

The coronavirus pandemic has brought out some of the worst human emotions: boredom, anger and laziness. But the flood of images posted on social media, showing people receiving the vaccine, brought a new feeling to the fore: jealousy.

Isabella Heuser, director of the Department of Psychology and Psychotherapy at the Charite Hospital in Berlin, explains that the envy of the other to receive the vaccine is not a traditional feeling of envy. It is more about feeling a setback.

And she adds: “Behind this feeling is a fear of not being vaccinated or contracting Covid-19.” This fear is heightened in light of the regulated doses of the vaccine and the new mutations of the virus.”

Psychoanalyst Eckard Buch says that envy is perfectly understandable in such a situation and should not be something to be ashamed of.

Eckard, the author of a book on jealousy, adds on radio: "Something I desperately needs and can't get, but I already see it in others, and that feeling arises from envy, which is a mixture of fear, anger and sadness."

The situation quickly turns very emotional when something vital, such as vaccines, is lacking, and the rules about who gets vaccinated first don't seem to make sense in some cases.

Besides envy about being vaccinated, there is also what might be known as vaccination shame, a feeling of fear that someone who has been vaccinated will talk about it.

Heuser adds that one is not obligated to tell everyone about this, but if he has already received the vaccine, is due, and wants to talk about it, that is fine, without going into details about why you were a top priority.

But Beuch does not believe that people are powerless in the face of their feelings. He says it is a good thing to react constructively to feelings of jealousy, and this begins with acknowledging that you have such feelings.

He adds that when waiting to receive a vaccination it can be comforting to think that there is a priority list, based on need, as it is very humane to take care of the vulnerable first.


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