How am I supposed to cope? How do I live with this now and for the rest of my life? I’m a senior and this week should have been my last week of school. No goodbyes. No graduation. No senior baseball season. No senior play. No senior prom. Nothing.

depressed girlThank you for writing in – you are giving voice to what so many seniors are feeling right now. This is not the senior year anyone expected or planned for. You, and so many others, are likely feeling a sense of grief and loss of all of the things you had looked forward to at the end of the school year. Not having these milestones and not having closure of the school year is a huge loss that many people are struggling with. You may be feeling sad, angry, shocked, confused, or all of the above. Similar to when you lose a loved one, grief takes time to recover from.

Some things you may find helpful:

  • Giving voice to your feelings is important in the path to coping. You’ve already done this, and we encourage you to continue to do so.
  • Stay socially connected during this time, whether by texting or a virtual get-together.
  • Identify things that you are grateful for and the things you can control.
  • Identify things you can do right now. Without the usual activities that you enjoy, you may have to think creatively about things you can do at home or virtually that bring you moments of joy and relaxation.
  • Consider alternate celebrations. While it will not be the same as the graduation or prom you planned, consider a way to celebrate your accomplishments at home or virtually.
As time passes, you may consider the ways these few months have been meaningful for you and your classmates. It’s not the senior year you hoped for, but it is a shared experience that you and your friends will carry with you, look back on, and feel bonded over.
We also encourage you to reach out to your healthcare provider who may be able to offer resources and tips unique to you and your community.​

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