Long distance Relationships during COVID-19

Long distance relationships take a turn during the pandemic and prove to be harder than predicted.


Courtesy of Hayley Scott

Connected: Facetime is a great resource for people to use to communicate with the ones they are unable to see. The list of things Covid-19 effects continues to grow. “I hope everyone does what they have to to keep everyone safe and help us move forward,” Vice Principal Tonya Grinde said.

COVID-19 has affected many people around the world: families, friends and couples. Because of being in quarantine, most people haven’t been able to visit their relatives in person due to the health risks. However, not being able to see relatives in person has put a strain on many relationships and has made it harder to keep a strong relationship. Long distance relationships are hard enough as they are, but COVID-19 and being in quarantine has made these relationships more difficult.

Vice Principal Tonya Grinde spoke about her experiences during COVID-19 and how her relationships with family and friends have changed.

“It was a long, long time to not see people that you love or to think about them being isolated. I think that’s probably one of the hardest parts of my grandma was that I was super sad that she couldn’t see any of her family,” Vice Principal Grinde said.

Grinde normally visits her grandmother in her assisted living home, however that was no longer possible.

“We all started writing back to what we used to do before email, talking on the phone and texting, we started writing my grandma cards and letters,” Grinde said.

Grinde, her father and her aunts were only able to see Grinde’s grandma through a glass window when they went to visit her in her assisted living home. It was difficult for Grinde’s grandma to understand why she couldn’t actually see her family through the glass window.

“The family that we usually have Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner with, unfortunately, one of the daughter’s husband’s has been fighting colon cancer,” said Grinde.

“It’s really horrible and they have three little kids. It’s been really horrible for us to not see them, but we’ve been able to isolate and socially distance ourselves on their back deck. We’ve been on their deck a couple of times and just stayed six feet apart,” Grinde said.

Thankfully still, Grinde has been able to see some of her relatives during the pandemic. Although it hasn’t been the ideal way to spend time with one another, looking through a glass window or being six feet apart, it is better than nothing. Health and safety are the most important things right now in preventing further spread of the current virus.

Kelly Guilfoil, an english teacher and National Honors Society advisor, spoke on her experiences related to long distance in the midst of the pandemic.

“My grandmother and baby Cordelia’s great grandmother is the person we haven’t been able to see, who we would most like to see who we haven’t seen in over a year. She is 93 and has never met her great granddaughter,” said Guilfoil.

Cordelia is Kelly Guilfoil’s daughter and was born 17. July 2020, right in the middle of COVID-19. It has been very hard to see Cordelia’s great grandmother in person because of the risk of spreading the virus to her great grandmother, who is at high risk.

“I just know that baby Cordelia’s great grandmother’s days are numbered. She’s not sick or anything, she’s just so old and I would love to spend more time with her,” Guilfoil said.

Kelly Guilfoil’s grandmother, who is Cordelia’s great grandmother, lives in Spokane, WA ,which is about a five hour drive from Lake Stevens. That is a pretty good distance from Lake stevens.

“With grandma, It’s mostly just I want her to have as much time with her great granddaughter as possible, and this is taking away some of that time, at least in person,” Guilfoil said.

So many people in the world are going through similar experiences with having limited contact with long distance family and friends. Quarantining and distancing from everyone hasn’t been the easiest way to stay in touch, but many have pulled through.
It has been one heck of a year. If anything, this pandemic has made us more grateful for the time that we do have with our family and friends who are far away. Moving forward out of this pandemic, the hope is that we learn to cherish the time we have with others more and not take any minute of that time for granted.