The outbreak of the coronavirus has changed the way we all carry out our day to day lives and this may be making you feel overwhelmed and anxious.
You may be finding it difficult not going to school, or feeling worried about older relatives who are more vulnerable to the virus.
It is completely normal to feel anxious during unsettling times and you’re not alone. So far here at Childline we have delivered more than 900 counselling sessions to young people worried about COVID-19 and if you are concerned then we have some advice to help support you.
‘My anxiety is getting worse’
One girl who contacted Childline said: “My mum is being very distant with me and I am usually very close to her, it’s really upsetting me. My mum and I have a good relationship but she’s really obsessed with the news and she won’t hug me or get very close to me. It scares me to think this will go on for months. She constantly talks about the Coronavirus and my anxiety is getting worse.”*
You may be struggling to cope with the 24/7 news coverage and you might not understand some of information that is being reported and how it will affect you.
Firstly, we advise all young people to only look at news sources they trust or read the NHS website to get a greater understanding of the virus’s symptoms and how best to protect themselves and others.
If you are confused or worried about something you have seen or read then we encourage you to have a conversation about this with a trusted adult. This could be a parent, guardian or one of our Childline counsellors. Remember to take your time and that no question is too silly to ask. A trusted adult will be able to talk to you and help you have a greater understanding of the information you are confused or worried about.
No young person should feel alone with their worries or concerns and it is important to remember there are people who can listen, help and support you.
Childline is here to listen
Finally, you can also always turn to Childline. If you are worried about the coronavirus you can use Childline’s online message boards to talk to other young people about how they’re feeling. You can also draw pictures and play games to relax and have fun.
Or you can speak to a trained Childline counsellor for free using the Childline website, or by calling 0800 1111.
*All names and potentially identifying details have been changed to protect the identity of the child or young person. Quotes are created from real Childline contacts but are not necessarily direct quotes from the young person.