3 months ago · Tanushree Misra · 0 comments
Parenting in the time of Corona Virus
Corona virus? Lockdown? Parenting? Might sound like a perfect recipe for a nightmare for some. This insidious virus has not just descended as a hazard on our physical heath but has shaken our mental health too inviting for more turbulent times. The fallout of this bleak situation has been an indefinite lockdown which has not only shackled us to our houses but also to our family members. As much as it’s difficult for people to wade through those murky waters, parents have been struggling to keep up with their children alongside the already impending hazard. Now that the breathing space in the relationships has ceased to exist as children instead of schools/colleges and parents instead of office/house work are all tied down under the same roof with a very little outside movement, it is very likely for parents to feel sandwiched between work and spending time with their children and consequently carry the guilt when failing to deliver. So just like in a flight, the oxygen masks are supposed to be worn on ourselves first and then assist the fellow passengers; similarly, it is important for parents to understand how crucial it is for them to maintain their mental hygiene before engaging with their children. Thus it is important to have a structured day so that the tasks at hand are ticked off smoothly and the moods are also regulated. While spacing out the tasks for the day, it is important that parents include ample amount of time for family bonding and engage in activities which will strengthen their relationship with their children. Activities like gardening, cooking, cleaning the house, playing games, watching movies together are some of the activities that can boost the relationship. With the disruption of the natural rhythm of the daily routine, the children might feel unsettled, out of place and anxious. It is then we need to make them confront the ongoing scenario of the lockdown and lay down factual information related to virus and comfort their nerves by hugging them, cuddling and making them feel secured. Dancing or singing to their favourite songs can also help them calm down. But it should be kept in mind that breaking down of the information about the virus might vary from age groups and that parents need to be patient about it and ask for assistance when needed.
As much as everyone likes lemonade, they like to keep the lemon content in check. Similarly, over-bonding or spending too much time together may backfire and lead to bitterness. Children should be taught how to spend time by themselves like inculcating the habit of reading books or learning a new skill to name some. Meanwhile parents can cut themselves some slack and indulge in activities which will help them rejuvenate and cater to their self growth. A work done under burden is work done inefficiently. Thus it’s important for parents to feel at ease themselves for their children to feel the same. Cause at the end of the day, they emulate and look up to you.