Abby* should have gotten to ride in a limo to prom with her friends who she’s gone to school with since elementary school. She should have gotten to plan what to do on senior skip day, sign her classmates’ yearbooks, pose for countless pictures, and attend backyard cookouts and graduation parties. She should have gotten to walk across the stage in her graduation cap and gown to receive her high school diploma while her family sat in the auditorium teary-eyed and proud and clapped for her.
Instead, Abby’s senior year was abruptly cut short and she’s been stuck in the house for weeks on end with her dad and stepmom. She’s desperate to see her friends. Texting and Facetime visits aren’t the same as hanging out in person. Her Instagram feed has gotten boring since no one is doing anything glamorous, fun or exciting. Each day is the same as the day before and are all starting to blur together. She has so many questions. Will she still get to take that girls trip to the beach before college starts? Will she still get to go to college in the Fall? And no one seems to have any answers.
Her father, Paul, recognized that Abby was struggling to process all the sudden changes and missed milestones and celebrations as a result of COVID-19. “I’m old school. I don’t believe in therapy. I come from the school of hard knocks and believe you just pull yourself up by your bootstraps,” said Paul. “However, I realize I can’t and shouldn’t impose my beliefs on Abby. Plus, a global pandemic is unchartered waters for all of us. As an adult, I have the life experiences under my belt to help me cope with the current situation and navigate all the emotions that come with it,” Paul continued. “Abby doesn’t have that perspective. Plus, she’s missed out on so many major memorable events. She’s sad and grieving. Her world feels like it’s crumbling and I’m not sure how to help her.”
Abby wanted help dealing with all the emotions she’s experiencing right now as a result of COVID-19 and asked if we could look into online therapy options for her. Paul reached out to Inpathy and was able to get Abby set up with a licensed therapist for individual virtual sessions. He also agreed to participate in virtual family counseling sessions with Abby so they could learn how to support each other during these uncertain and challenging times.