As tiny children walk around masked and isolated, all over a disease imperiling them less than the flu, some are asking a question:
What will be the consequences when little humans, social beings by nature, are raised in quarantine?
Suicides have already been attributed to the lockdowns. In April, 12-year-old Texas boy Hayden Hunstable took his own life, having been “badly affected by being separated from his friends and his routine,” reported the Mirror in May. “He didn’t like the isolation,” said Brad Hunstable, the lad’s father. “He didn’t like being at home” (video below).
Of course, though suicides are on the rise, most kids will survive quarantine. But there’s still a concern about their psychological well-being.
The New York Times’ Matt Richtel tackled this matter recently. Telling the story of two-year-old Alice McGraw, he wrote that she “was walking with her parents in Lake Tahoe this summer when another family appeared, heading in their direction. The little girl stopped.”
“‘Uh-oh,’ she said and pointed: “‘People.’”
Alice has, of course, been taught to be wary of people, to socially distance, and to commit to all of COVID ritual, which is so appealing, it seems, in a society that has lost its faith. Richtel states that she is a member of a generation being raised in a “bubble” — without other children.
“Gone for her and many peers are the play dates, music classes, birthday parties, the serendipity of the sandbox or the side-by-side flyby on adjacent swingsets,” writes Richtel. “Many families skipped day care enrollment in the fall, and others have withdrawn amid the new surge in coronavirus cases.” And with children poised to spend a long dark winter hidden away from other kids, many parents worry about how long-term social isolation will affect their youngsters.
“‘People are trying to weight [sic] pros and cons of what’s worse: putting your child at risk for COVID or at risk for severe social hindrance,’ said Suzanne Gendelman, whose daughter, Mila, 14 months old, regularly spent rug time with Alice McGraw before the pandemic,” relates Richtel.
The shame of this situation — and what journalists such as Richtel should be ashamed of — is that Gendelman finds the above a dilemma because of media malpractice. That is to say, the psychological effects of the given isolation may be debatable. Something else is not:
Young children are at essentially no risk from the China virus.