Mental Health during social distancing

Due to the global pandemic of COVID-19, many mandatory safety precautions have been enacted including the stay at home order that is meant to keep everyone in their houses for the safety of others. This is affecting every individual in different ways. People in all different stages of life were required to take a pause. This can take a toll on a person’s physical and mental health. However, there are many resources that are provided to make it easier to connect with friends and family members.

   Ashley Bower, a sophomore at Darby, has been using different methods to get in touch with her peers. 

   “I’ve been FaceTiming my friends a lot and keeping in touch through Snapchat. I’ve also hung out with my friends outside while being 6 feet apart of course. The pros are that I still get to see my friends and talk to them. But the negatives are it’s not the same as it usually is and I miss being able to go places with them,” she said.

   Freshman Miguel Santiago is using similar ways to contact his friends. 

   He says, “I stayed in contact with my friends virtually via the iPhone. The pros to this method during these crazy times, is that I can stay in touch with my friends without coming in contact with them, thus eliminating the risk of infection. But the cons are that I cannot really have a face-to-face talk with them. Like when we used to hang out together, I can’t do that anymore.”

   Each individual is also trying out their own coping mechanisms. This situation is new and no one knows exactly how to deal with it. Everyone may have methods that work better for them, but it is beneficial to reach out to friends or other people for ways to stay healthy during the difficult time.

   Eleventh grader Sam Dicke says, “I cope by staying on a schedule like normal. I sign into my classes in the order that I would on a normal day. And my advice would be to try something new, or rediscover an old hobby.”

   Allison Palovchick , a 10th grader, has been coping by speaking with loved ones whether it’s from a distance or over the phone. 

   She says, “For anyone who is struggling I would recommend reaching out to other people in any way you can. Simply hearing someone’s voice or seeing them over a video chat is really helpful and makes the loneliness a little more bearable.”

   Everyone is going through something similar. It can be a very stressful and highly emotional time. Reaching out to others for help is one of the best things people can do. Maybe that is just sending someone a simple text of encouragement or checking in on how they are doing. Being aware of people to make sure they are not isolating. Everyone is supporting each other and learning while staying safe.

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