Family Life in Quarantine


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Parents with Children Playing Game at Home. Flat Cartoon Mother, Father and Two Daughter Different Ages Spending Time Together in Living Room. Happy Parenthood and Childhood. Vector Illustration

Evan McAfee, Staff Writer

All relationships involve a degree of conflict and it’s normal to argue more during stressful times. From worrying about your health and the health of your loved ones to facing increased financial uncertainty, all of the classic marital stressors have been amplified by the events of 2020.

For some couples, pandemic friction has involved a few more fights about the laundry or the savings account. For others, the lockdown has exposed issues that run deeper and offered ample time for reflection, leaving them to wonder about their options for pursuing separation during the pandemic. 

With many couples stuck in the house, homeschooling children, and facing added financial uncertainty, it should come as no surprise that the coronavirus pandemic is placing additional strain on relationships that were already struggling.

Additionally, support systems have become more difficult to access. Venting to friends over coffee or spending a night out on the town just isn’t an option right now. If you’ve been using these outlets to manage stress, or, perhaps, to avoid dealing with deeper problems you may find yourself suddenly in the position of having to confront your difference head-on.

It’s no surprise that given this, many marriages have reached their breaking point. Although the recognition of real, substantive problems in a marriage can be a sobering moment, it is also a necessary and hopeful turning point on the road to a healthy future.

With many schools and workplaces closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, many of us have found ourselves dealing with a new, and often very stressful, family situation. As well as having to work from home and run the household, you’re likely also trying to keep your kids on track with their virtual school work all while enduring the restrictions of social distancing and even being cut off from the support of friends and loved ones. 

The coronavirus pandemic has thrown many of us into the role of de facto homeschool teacher. In addition to all your other responsibilities, you may be finding it difficult to keep your children on track or helping them with assignments, especially if they’re in different grades. Keep in mind that this is a stressful time for kids, as well, and that it’s normal for them to regress or act out in ways they normally wouldn’t.

There are a large number of children living with financial insecurity and grief. No sane person would expect kids to be feeling better in those circumstances. Still, the rise of happiness in the families lucky enough to be experiencing it is notable. It helps parents see some of what was going wrong before the pandemic, and contemplate how they might want to restructure their lives after this is over.


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