Amid this pandemic of Covid-19 that has gripped the world and has made itself at home here in Florida, it is expected that families are experiencing fear, anxiety, concern or all of the above. While the news media continues to inform us as to how the pandemic is evolving, it does not advise us on how to keep our children informed and calm.
As parents tend to shield their children from any fear or anxiety they may be experiencing themselves, they tend to forget that children are very impressionable and intelligent. No matter how hard parents may try to shield their children from these emotions, it is more than likely that the children can sense their parents anguish of fear, anxiety and or concern. It is important to remember that your children have already been informed about the virus prior to this quarantine and that speaking with them to keep them informed and educated is very important. If you are co-parenting, a discussion with the other parent regarding the Covid-19 virus should be had; and both of you should have a unified front when discussing with your children. Your ability to Co-parent as per Florida’s shared parental responsibility, insures that you are keeping your child’s best interest at the forefront.
Below are some suggestions as to how to approach this informative discussion with your children:
- Be as honest as possible taking into consideration the age of the child. For example: Your discussion with a 5 year old will be different from your discussion with a teenager.
- It may be helpful to describe the symptoms as those that are related to the common cold or flu (such as coughing and fever).
- This virus is continuously evolving and you may not have all the answers and that’s ok. Tell them that.
- Reassure them that there are a lot of people (doctors, nurses, scientists, government officials etc) that are working around the clock to find a solution and keep us healthy.
- That despite what’s going on, they are safe and that you will follow the guidelines to stay safe.
- Discuss the guidelines with them (safe distancing, self-quarantine, no congregating, early closures/shut downs of restaurants, super markets etc. and home schooling.
- Please emphasize to them that this is temporary and reiterate that we have a lot of people working around the clock to keep everyone safe.
- Your children may have anxiety or fears of their own and it is up to you to give them the information and guidance to help them through this period.
- Stress the importance of washing hands for at least 20 seconds.
- Continue to practice healthy habits, follow CDC guidelines, keep them informed and most importantly stay calm, so you can give them a sense of security.
Please feel free to reach out to our office, if you have any questions regarding Co-parenting, timesharing and/or any children’s issues related to the Covid-19 virus.
Our family law office has been serving the tri-county for years. If you would like more information regarding our office, please call us at 954-529-2057. We are here for you.