Helping High School Seniors Cope

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While we are all missing many of the things we love to do, our high school seniors are missing major life milestones. From proms to graduations to just the regular rhythm of saying good-bye to teachers and preparing for college orientation, high school seniors are having to transition into a new stage of life without necessarily feeling like they are getting closure from their current life stage.

According to NPR, here are a few things you can do to help your high school senior cope:

Acknowledge their feelings
Simply acknowledge their feelings—”the sadness and disappointment they feel about the loss of prom, celebrations and graduation.”  For many young people this is the biggest thing they’ve experienced and as a generation, this is a really big experience for them.

Encourage them to stay connected
Encourage them to stay connected—even virtually—with their friends.  “It’s important to maintain social connection and intimacy even if it this is not in person.”  Shared online activities such as group chats, dinners, and even movie watching, give students the opportunity to share this experience with their peers.

Shift focus to what they can control
Discuss what things they can control (i.e. daily exercise, cooking new foods) and begin to focus on the positive events that will take place once this pandemic is over. How will you celebrate?  Begin making those plans now.

Emphasize the greater good
Point out to young people that they are making sacrifices right now not just for their own health and safety, but for the greater good. Changes in everyday life to limit the spread of disease may be hard, but “we’re in it together and we’re in it to benefit the larger community and to have a good impact on overall health and wellbeing.”

What things are  you doing with your senior to help them cope with how this school year is ending?

Read this entire article here.

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