How To Talk To Your Children About The Coronavirus

  • by XpatAthens
  • Monday, 23 March 2020
How To Talk To Your Children About The Coronavirus
These days my 7-year-old daughter wants to play 'hospital' all the time. We pretend to be the nurses helping patients who are infected with the coronavirus and have to be operated. At first, no one survived; everyone died at once. "We can't go on like this, I need to change the scenario," I thought to myself. As I was given the role of head nurse, I changed the story, and from that point on, everyone recovers from their illness! Hooray!

News about the coronavirus is everywhere, and children hear it all. Our new living conditions, the fear of what has already happened topped with the fear that "we haven't seen the worst yet," affect them directly. You need to talk to your child in a way that makes him or her feel safe so that they don't get more scared than they may already be. So how are you going to do this?

First, you start with an open discussion about the virus. After all, your child does see people in masks and gloves. It's an excellent opportunity to talk about precautions and to put things into perspective. Don't forget that you're the one filtering the news for your child.

You give information according to your child's age. Talk to him or her about their concerns. Ask them about what they already know, what they believe will happen, and how they feel about it. Maybe they have questions. Your answers need to be honest.

If you are concerned about the situation, make sure you calm down first before you talk to your child. Panic doesn't help anyone.

As children are self-centered, it's easy for them to think they will get the virus. If this is the case with your child, reassure them by saying that children cannot catch the virus as easily as adults and go through the precautions they need to take. Children feel empowered when they know what to do to protect themselves.

Follow a routine, especially now that schools are closed. Routine gives children a sense of security. Regular meals and sleeping hours help children stay healthy and happy.

Keep the communication channel with your child open. It is perfectly ok to admit that you do not know everything, that you do not have the answers to every question, and that you will keep your child up to date on any critical developments.

Remember, you're setting an example for your children. That's why you're staying home!


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