KATIE'S BLOG: The Covid blame game

We hosted a really informative Zoom Live, with our resident Dr Philippa Kaye, about Covid back to school anxiety and how we can help prepare our kids to ease gently back into their new routines.  You can watch it back here:

BUT what we didn't talk to Philippa about, is the part of covid anxiety that NO-ONE is talking about:
THE BLAME GAME AND THE TROLLING
So forgive me, but after receiving a load of messages and emails about this tonight and all week, I've decided to use my soap box to address the issue of how a small minority of kids and parents are behaving towards other kids and parents, who have either tested positive for Covid or are waiting for their test results.
Like us, our children have been tested to the limits with this pandemic. Many have tragically lost loved ones and not even been able to say goodbye. But most have followed all the rules pretty much to the letter, especially in the first few months and, understandably, slowly by slowly, as lock down ended and restrictions were eased, they started to socialise more and more, as did we.
Granted some of the messages were confusing - bubbles of 6?, weddings/gatherings of under 30?, outside/inside? Go to shops and pubs, but not on public transport, etc etc. We, and they, have done our best.
But it was, and is, inevitable that at some point someone in their or our friendship crowd was going to get Covid from someone and somewhere. And they, or we, will UNKNOWINGLY pass it on to another child or parent and then another.
But, NOBODY goes out of their way to get it and nobody goes out of their way to purposely pass it on to someone else. And MOST kids and parents behave responsibly and don't go out, if they are positive or waiting for a test result.
And yet i have heard, and seen first hand, that there are a lot of children and their parents, who are not only being harassed by other parents and children on the phone or online, but they are being trolled and bullied consistently, over a prolonged period of time, and it is now affecting their mental health terribly.
So i want to say, on their behalf, that it has to STOP. Ofcourse the timing is terrible, we all despearately want our kids to go back to school, college and uni and us back to work and our parents to be safe, but there is never going to be a good time for an outbreak, if its not now it will be in 2 weeks, 2 months etc etc.
But where is the compassion?
Where is the; 'I'm so sorry', 'i hope you are ok', 'can i help you?', 'call if you need anything'.
The rhetoric has turned nasty; Who gave what to who, when?. Who was responsible for the chain of events?, Who can be embarrassed, trashed, humiliated, reported even?'.
I can't tell you the amount of emails and texts i've had on this subject and i've seen it first hand from adults and kids in my own community too.
Its nothing more than peeping tom syndrome. It doesn't help anyone, all it does is make a poor child and their parents feel terrible about themselves, guilty (for doing nothing wrong) and some kids have had their mental health so badly damaged by this blame game, that they are turning to dangerous and worrying coping mechanisms to deal with it.
So PLEASE, if you hear of someone that may be positive or is waiting for a test result or are isolating at home for two weeks now and missing school and their parents therefore cant work, please just be KIND.
Ask how they are, rather than blame them and gossip. We know its a stressful time, we know some people have let their guards down more than others, but we are still all in the same boat together and if you are not sure of the 'right guidance for your own family', please go to the OFFICIAL government website in your country, to find out what the next steps should be.
Stay well, keep safe, look after each other and let these beautiful children* (Generation Z) in their Covid Pandemic Lockdown song 'STRONG', remind us all of whats important right now. #Staystrong.
N.B. every download on Spotify, iTunes or any of the major streaming platforms, will raise money for Young Minds and Grief Encounter.
*shameless but relevant plug as it features one of mine!

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