Will Government Be Willing to 'Reel It In'?

Author:Puterbaugh, Dolores T.

Every parent knows it--bend a teen's curfew or let a special occasion override the usual bath-and-bed for school-aged kids, and you are stuck. For months, every time you attempt to be a stickler about rules, they will push back. "It was okay for Homecoming; why not for the prom?" 'You let us stay up late on New Year's Eve; why can't we stay up late tonight? It's not a school night"--and so I wonder about the months ahead.

As I write this, the COVID-19 adaptations and restrictions are in fervent swing. I have moved my therapy sessions, reluctantly, to all telehealth for as long as it is most prudent. It is week three, and I am sick of earbuds and more than a little bit sad. I miss the warmth of connection with clients.

I also see that many clients simply are cancelling when perhaps a little coaching and encouragement would be quite helpful. The churches are closed and we regular worshipers, especially, are feeling the absence of community.

I wonder how we will adapt to the reemergence of what "normal" will be post-COVID-19. One sure thing: our various levels of government will attempt to go back to the preCOVID-19 rules where they have been bent, or eased, or thrown out the window. One question is, will post-COVID-19 America meekly acquiesce or will there be pushback from the public?

Restaurants are closed except for delivery and take-out. Rules have been eased and apparently your to-go order can be, "A shepherd's pie, the fish-and-chips special, and two Guinness"--or perhaps the American classic, "Two rum runners, a plate of wings, and a half-cup of stale peanuts." Will the happy customers who headed home with their dinner and aperitif on the back floorboard be satisfied when they no longer can pick up their favorite beverages to go?

Everything in the world of health care is heavily regulated. This includes telehealth. In the tele-mental health world, we cannot use Skype or Facetime; we are required to use special, Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act-compliant platforms. Under the current emergency situation, these strict rules have been eased at the national--albeit not at my state (Florida)--level.

I know someone who insists on using Facetime. He trusts Facetime. Suspicious of other programs and leery of identity theft, he thus far has refused to sign up for the telehealth platform his therapist is using exclusively during the COVID-19 duration. He is accustomed to going in person. If his therapist acquiesces for now and...

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