The Covid-19 crisis is a tough time for parents; aside from financial stresses, many also encounter difficulties in making their teenagers stay quarantined. In fact, members of the young generation are now calling themselves “quaranteens” at social media sites.
Under normal conditions dealing with developing teenagers is already a challenge, especially if an adolescent wants to gain independence early in life. Parents who were in the same boat during their years as teens, can easily relate to what their teenagers are going through.
Some fathers or mothers are inclined to be more liberal by giving their teenager greater freedom than what they, as teenagers were, allowed to have. Some others tend to be more strict, all because they want to protect their children from any kind of hurt; be it physical or emotional. Yet what we have to keep in mind is that deep inside every adolescent’s heart and mind, is the yearning to live life in the future as the person that they envision themselves to be, and not what their parents want or expect them to be.
The Covid-19 Crisis Made Parenting More Difficult than It Already Is
Parenting is not a cut-and-dried job where a straightforward set of rules can be applied to ensure that the outcome will meet the standards. It entails giving greater allowance for flexibility and tolerance by considering the setting and conditions we have imposed on our so-called “quaranteens.” If during their pre-adolescent years we encouraged them to learn how to cope on their own, while we as parents engage in full time work, then the yearning to become wholly independent becomes stronger as they enter their in-between years.
However, the conditions imposed by the Covid-19 crisis is something no parent had expected. As everyone is required to stay confined to their home in order to avoid the disease that could affect every member of the household, the change could result in strained family relationships. The breadwinners will suddenly be faced with money problems, while work-from-home conditions have to take place in a setting made chaotic by restless children.
Remember, Covid-19 came at a time when many young people were looking forward to experiencing Junior-Senior Proms, graduation rites and balls, as well as spending spring break with friends at beaches, attending annual music events and all other occasional celebrations young people have long awaited. You as father or mother would understand the disappointment they are experiencing. Keep the communication open between and your teenager so you could in some ways ease feelings of despondency. .
Keep Communications between Family Members Open Often
One great thing about the orders to stay quarantined inside one’s home is that parents have more time to spend with their children. Even if one is engaged in a work-from-home arrangement, there is extra time to spend with the children. After all, you do not have to leave the house early, or stay longer at the workplace just to avoid the heavy traffic. It would be best to spend those extra hours bonding and communicating with your children.
We might take it for granted that our adolescents know what exactly is happening, since they also get to read and come across news about the Covid-19 crisis at social media sites. Yet we cannot expect them to fully understand the full implications and impact of the crisis on the family — teenagers are less likely to be interested in reading about economic impacts and about recession or depression.
Try your best to explain the potential consequences of the Covid-19 crisis on the family, in the simplest ways they could understand. Cite examples if you must, like not being able to pay for the great electric dirt bikes you bought on credit for them last Christmas. That if any of them continues to sneak out just to hang out with friends, they could get infected and subsequently infect the rest of the family as well. Try to make them understand that if that happens, whatever savings the family has, will only be depleted by mounting medical expenses and costly hospital bills.
Although communicating information like those could make them more frightened, it might at least keep them from sneaking out because they think “quaranteens’ are invulnerable to the disease.