Dear Barb—After COVID

Dear Barb:

Well, it looks like the pandemic is coming to an end.  I am finally looking forward to the future, although my mom does not share my view.  She has health issues, so has been quite isolated in her home for over a year.  She still won’t leave her home for fear of catching the virus, even though she has been fully vaccinated.  She fears there will be another lockdown, so she might as well stay safe at home. 

I am worried that she has been mentally affected to the point where she may never want to leave home again.  She has had issues with anxiety in the past and I am wondering if that is contributing to her fears.  Do you have any suggestions on how I could help my mom get through this and start to enjoy her life and feel safe again?  Thanks, Marissa. 

Hi Marissa:

It does seem like we are slowly getting back to normal, but there is still a threat from the variants, therefore safety protocols still need to be kept in place and followed.  Aside from the obvious physical impact of the Corona virus, the psychological effects, which include stress, anxiety, and depression, can be equally disturbing.

You mentioned that your mother experienced anxiety prior to the onset of the virus and subsequent lockdowns; so she was likely already vulnerable to the psychological effects.  Now that the threat of the virus is beginning to subside, it doesn’t mean her symptoms will immediately disappear.  But there are ways you can help your mother to alleviate some of the symptoms of anxiety and stress she is experiencing.

First, make sure your mother is getting her information from reliable sources, if you have any doubts or concerns about something you have heard or read, go to Government of Canada COVID-19 site.  This site includes an abundance of resources to assist individuals in navigating this untraveled road.  Also, it is important that you and your mom maintain a healthy lifestyle by eating healthy meals and getting physical exercise.  Don’t just sit in the house watching the news all day and getting COVID overload.  Fill your mind with positive thoughts.  Plan for your future when you will be able to do the things you haven’t been able to.  Remain in contact with friends and family.  These are all things you can help your mom to do, which will ultimately help you.  If any of your mother’s symptoms seem to get worse encourage her to speak to her family doctor and possibly see a counsellor.  Be patient with your mom, everyone processes things at their own speed.  Your mother is fortunate to have a caring daughter to help her through this hurdle.  There is a light at the end of the tunnel.  Best of luck Marissa.

Email your questions to Some submissions may be edited for length or to protect confidentiality; your real name and location will never be printed. This column is for entertainment only. The author is not a professional counsellor and this column is not intended to take the place of professional advice.