We’re entering the pandemic’s second year at the moment. It’s great to think that vaccines are filtering out right now, but not everyone has had theirs yet. Also, the rollout seems slower than everyone would like, so it will probably be several more months till we return to something like normalcy.
That’s hard on people in many ways. Many individuals report feeling isolated and depressed. It’s a public health crisis that exists at the same time as the coronavirus itself.
Part of what’s happening is that families can’t see each other, and if you’re close with your relatives, that might be the most challenging part about all this. Still, some ways do exist for you to remain in contact. Let’s discuss five of your best options.
The Family Text Chain
Some families have instituted what society is calling the “family text chain.” The general idea is that you can text your mom, dad, sibling, cousin, etc., but you can also include them all on a chat and send messages to keep all of them updated at the same time.
This is a smart idea because you can convey what you’re thinking and feeling to several family members simultaneously. You might feel lonely and want to talk to someone you know, and you can reach out to several people all across the country with only a single message.
The family text chain worked well during the holidays for people who could not see their families over Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, etc. There’s no reason not to think people won’t continue to use it for several months to come.
If you do set up a family text chain, though, be sure you only text when it’s appropriate to do so. Don’t ever text and drive. Texting causes 64% of US road accidents right now, so wait till you get home before reaching out via this method.
You can also use social media for family communications. You might use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other platform on which all your family members are active.
You can access social media on virtually any device. You can use your smartphone if you want to message a family member while you’re on the go, or you can use a laptop, desktop, or tablet instead.
Social media is a fun way for you and the family to stay in touch since you can send not only detailed messages but also videos, memes, emojis, and all kinds of other fun content if you’re feeling playful.
The Old-Fashioned Phone Call
You can also call a family member the old-fashioned way. You can even set up a time for a multiple-person phone call.
The only issue there is that it can be a little chaotic with everyone talking at once. That’s why the one-on-one call is usually better.
You can talk to each family member individually this way. You can tell them about what’s happening at work, any hot gossip in your social circle, or anything else that might make you feel normal so you can forget about the anxiety for a while.
This can be a great thing to do for your sanity. You might talk to a parent or sibling once a week, or more than that if you feel the need.
Facetime or a Similar Service
You can also have a Facetime call if you and the other family member both have iPhones, or you can use a similar communication method, like Zoom. There are multiple platforms now that allow one-on-one, face-to-face interactions.
This is similar to a regular phone call, but sometimes it’s nice to see your family member’s face. Maybe you have not seen them in-person for many months. Just seeing them as you speak to them can make you feel better and not so isolated.
The Socially Distanced Meeting
Meeting in-person is one more thing you can do. However, if you decide to try this option, you have to follow rules to make sure everyone remains safe.
You probably don’t want to drive halfway across the country if your family member lives far away. This is only an option if they live in the same city as you do.
You can both wear masks and meet outside, staying at least six feet away from each other. That’s the safest method. You can do this, but it’s winter right now, and many parts of the country are very cold. Still, a brief outdoor visit might be possible.