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The student news site of Downers Grove South High School


The student news site of Downers Grove South High School


COVID-19 crashes customs

Caitlin Spindler
The isolation the pandemic brought has had a disastrous effect on youth, their mental health and maturity

As we all know, the COVID-19 pandemic shut the entire world down almost four years ago. Businesses closed down, schools shut down, and us students were stuck sitting in our bedrooms on Zoom calls. We lost out on sports, school events and for some of us, our first year of high school.

COVID-19 has impacted the way everyone lives their lives and goes about their days, but for teenagers, it struck us down. According to the National Institute of Health, COVID-19 impacted everyone but especially adolescents. Personally, I went months without seeing my friends and finished my eighth grade year from the seclusion of my bedroom.

Going into freshman year, I had to learn how to mature while being online or walking the halls with a bulky face shield- which sucked. Even in-person there was not a connection. The biggest way teenagers have felt the weight of COVID-19 is from the impact it has had on our social skills and development.

Teens were stuck doing e-learning in their room, which decreased social interaction completely. Some of us may have not even interacted on those Zoom calls and just left our cameras facing our ceilings. During the first couple of months of the pandemic, the only human interaction kids had was with their families, which we all know can be a little much at times.

Social skills are how we go about our everyday life, and teens don’t even know the basics of it. Most of us are scared to pick up the phone and order food – including me. There’s definitely something wrong with that. If we can’t even pick up the phone, how are we going to go on with our lives and get a job?

Conversing with other people is a basic life skill. It’s just not possible to succeed in life if we don’t know how to interact with others. Most teenagers haven’t been going out of their way to have a conversation with someone.

Most of them just keep to themselves and not converse with others which has led to a serious disconnect with our peers. This is becoming a serious societal issue.

Developmental skills have also gone downhill. Teens are being called immature because they don’t know how to interact with
their peers or adults. They can’t hold a simple conversation or successfully talk to people.

So many fun and beneficial experiences are being blocked by a invisible wall. We have everything we need. Our lack of interactions is detrimental to our social skills.

Teens have literally become hermits. We don’t like to leave the comfort of our bedrooms and would rather scroll on TikTok than going outside and touching grass.

So, go touch some grass please.

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