JUPITER, Fla. — Wess Yancsurak, a father to three elementary school aged children in Martin County, said parents are stressed about back to school decisions.
“My wife and I have been agonizing over the decision on what’s best to do,” he said. “Everyone is entitled to their own opinion for their own situation, but there is a lot of anxiety, because there is no right decision to make.”
Jennifer Tomko, a psychotherapist and owner of Clarity Health Solutions, said the anxiety is sky-high for parents. So much so that she is offering free, 30-minute consultations until the end of the month.
“People are overwhelmed, people are stressed out, and people are feeling fearful right now, so if you put all three together, people are feeling really depleted,” she said.
Some parents are now turning to therapy as a way to navigate this pandemic.
“I would absolutely consider that,” said Yancsurak.
Tomko said those debates over mask requirements for students in schools are a stressor as well.
“It’s created some tense conversations over the last few weeks,” said Yancsurak.
For the parents, more than the kids, she believes.
“I don’t think there will be long term negative effects with this,” said Tomko. “I think kids will adapt. I really do.”
Tomko said she does worry about virtual learning the the hyper-focus it creates on academics only, especially for older kids.
“They look forward to the parts between the academics,” she said.
Tomko said knowing that going in will be of great value to parents. She’s advising her clients to balance school and play, to put structure and accountability in place.