Pandemic and Family Dynamics: How COVID-19 Intensified Family Tensions

sad woman

Long before the pandemic, some of us have been battling certain issues that challenged our family dynamics. There are families where parents fail to give enough time and attention to their growing children. Some are having issues with behavioral disorders. Some had to cope with traumatic events that happened with family members. There are also families whose finances were the main reason for their poor quality of life.

And then, the pandemic came. Suddenly, our way of living changed. Now that we live in the new normal, more families are under great pressure and are in dire need of professional help.

It is no secret that the sudden change in routine changed life as we know it. Before, we can easily go out and turn to our friends when we need emotional support. Now, most of us are stuck at home, which is sometimes more stressful than following health protocols when outdoors.

Due to the pandemic, many family issues worsened. As everyone’s mental health continues to be put to the test, more families require professional help to address the following issues.

Fear or Loss of Family Members

Many people lost a loved one during the pandemic. They were not ready to say goodbye, yet they had no choice after a friend or family member succumbed to the virus. This left some of us traumatized, with some unable to move on.

Some of us have to live knowing some of our loved ones tested positive for the virus. We fear for their lives and our own family’s health as well. The need for social isolation and restrictions to hospital visits makes it even more difficult to prepare ourselves for what is to come.

For families who have members with severe COVID-19 cases, they have no choice but to prepare themselves for the possibility of their loved ones dying. Palliative and hospice care become the only way they can get support for themselves and their loved ones. A family psychologist can also help families with the grieving process and beyond.

Addiction Abuse and Alcohol Misuse

Some people had to stop engaging in their routine after the pandemic hit the globe. Most of us do almost everything at home. Some no longer go to the gym regularly, while others chose to stop regular sessions with their counselors.

The added stress and social isolation placed many people at risk for alcohol and substance abuse mid-pandemic. Those who used to go to therapy opted not to push through with their virtual consultations. Some have been doing so well but experienced relapse during the pandemic.

When a family member indulges in this abuse, it puts the family’s health in jeopardy. One might lose their job, neglect their family responsibilities, or even engage in violence. Such situations require the support of a pro to ensure they can still change their habits for the better.

Financial Pressure


Many people lost their jobs during COVID-19. Their companies shut down, businesses turned bankrupt, or they lost customers who were also struggling financially. When a family’s financial health is at stake, many negative things can happen, often resulting in a family’s poor quality of life.

The financial pressure can also put a strain on the family members’ relationships. Parents may struggle to provide for the family’s basic needs, often leading to anger, frustration, and feeling of guilt. The kids can feel the tension and might even need to drop out of school.

There are ways families can cope with the loss of livelihood. The parents and capable children must stay focused on how to sustain the family’s needs. Thankfully, there are government and nonprofit initiatives available.

Families can also turn to family psychologists and seek professional support. They can provide insight on how they can cope during these difficult times. One can also turn to financial advisors and explore what available options they have to get back on their feet.

Mental health

Many people are suffering from anxiety, depression, and even eating disorders during the crisis. Social isolation did not help in managing such conditions. This is especially true since some people still find mental health talks as taboo.

Thankfully, professionals now use different platforms to help families struggling with mental health issues while quarantining. For one, telehealth and telemedicine serve as gateways for families needing professional support without leaving their homes. Whether a family needs help coping with an eating disorder, anxiety issues, depression, or even addiction, they now have better access to proper health services.

Many things happened during the pandemic. As more families struggle to cope with the new normal, they must get the support they need from the pros. Sometimes, the best way to start recuperating from family issues starts with welcoming the help of licensed professionals.

About the Author

Scroll to Top