They say it takes a village to raise a child, but how exactly does that work when the village is at least 6 feet away or, even more likely, online only?
The lockdowns put in place over the last few months have closed schools, daycares, playgrounds and just about anywhere else a child might go outside of their home. While this could lead to more, often coveted together time for families, it also means parents are taking on new challenges. Many continue to work full and part-time jobs from home while also helping to facilitate online learning for school-age kids and/or wrangling young children throughout the day.
Then, you add in emotional well-being. Cut off from grandparents, teachers and friends, kids are trying to comprehend what’s going on and how to get by without a significant portion of their support system. Depending on their age, they might understand too little or too much. And yes, there are resources aplenty to help talk to kids about COVID-19, but it is still difficult for parents to do so, particularly as they attempt to take care of themselves. Remember, no matter the age, we are all struggling.
To top it all off, there’s coronavirus. But, enough about that.
All this to say, pandemic-era parenting is a new kind of balancing act with unprecedented responsibilities and waves of emotion from guilt to exhaustion to contentment to gratitude.
If you are a parent - as many of us at the R. J. Leonard Foundation are - you’re not alone.
This is hard.