With lockdown relaxations, my children are anxious about their safety in the outside world.
Governments all over the world are easing the lockdown restrictions so that people can begin moving around and resume their routines, albeit in a phased manner.
It is odd to think that we are all now worried and anxious about visiting the same places and doing the same things that we were so happily and fearlessly doing earlier. We are not alone- our children also share this anxiety. And this anxiety stems from not knowing- “How will we all fit into the class with social distancing”, “How will I play football -it’s a contact sport and we always end up touching each other.” “My board exams were stopped mid-way- will they happen, should I study for that or for my new class?” and worst of all “Will I be safe when I step out of the house and go to the market, or the school or for my tuition classes. So many people come to all these places.”
While we as adults may not have the answers to most of these questions ourselves – we need to manage our children’s anxieties, need to give them the real picture and the correct decision-making tips to handle the new world.
Tough – but who said parenting was easy.
So here is what we would suggest :
- Tell them about the way things are in the world. That’s it’s a pandemic which has brought most of the world to a halt.
- Tell them that there is no vaccine and no cure yet, so there is a cause for worry. Also, tell them that recovery rates are increasing, so infection does not equal death.
- Make them understand why the world is opening up. That economic stress on individuals will lead to larger problems than we can imagine. They may say “if people die what’s the point of jobs?”. Make them understand that everything needs to work in balance. And therefore, life must restart but there will be new ways to live.
- Explain about individual safety and personal space and rights. Each of us has to be responsible for ourselves so we must protect ourselves by following all the processes. If any other person violates their personal space for social distancing, they can politely tell them to step back or to wait for their turn. If they don’t listen, let people pass and go later. That’s how we give importance to life and safety.
- And most of all explain to them that when they start going out, they must not become lax after a few days and start taking liberties and short cuts however difficult it may seem to follow safety procedures. This laxity can be life-threatening for them and your family.
Children of all ages who are stepping outpost lockdown relaxations must understand these things.
Being prepared is better than being anxious. And knowledge alleviates anxiety.