Social Life in Isolation

Staff Writer: Jaiden Palys

High School is just one big social experiment. Years after graduation, when you’re reminiscing of your time in high school, it’ll be your friendships, relationships, and other interactions with people that you’ll remember most. Thanks to our months of isolation, we’ve lost a great portion of opportunity for such experiences.

During our five months away, a great many of you have likely stopped talking to other people or experienced your friends stop talking to you. Some may have handled it well, understanding that it weeds out those who are your real friends from those who aren’t. On the other hand, for some it could’ve destroyed them emotionally making them feel like they’re all alone and nobody cares about them.

If you’re lucky, you may not have had to deal with any of this. Maybe you’ve successfully been able to keep up with your friends and even hang out with them despite quarantine.

I intend to receive different perspectives from students on their experiences. By doing this, it may provide a sense of clarity to both those interviewed and you, the reader.

Many have been cooped up in their room for these many months, having hardly interacted with another soul the entire time.

Question: How have your relationships/friendships with others been impacted while in quarantine? How might this have made you feel?

Anonymous: “A few people in which I had initially considered to be my closest friends had stopped making an effort to talk to me. I’m very insecure in my friendships so for a while I was under the impression that they all hated me or just didn’t like me anymore. When school started back up, I had realized it wasn’t that way and I guess we’re still friends, we just aren’t as close as we once were. This whole experience has undeniably left me in a bad spot emotionally, but I don’t blame anyone for that.”

Hannah Rhodes: “I haven’t been able to make any new friends, which kind of stinks because I’m very social and I like talking to people. As for the relationships that I already have my closest friends have stayed intact but everyone else kind of drifted away since we can’t see each other as much and we’re supposed to be socially distanced. This makes me upset because like I said I’m a social person and I enjoy talking to people and making new friends. Although my closest relationships have been good, it’s unfortunate that everyone else kind of drifted away.”

Jaeden Olivo (an online student): “Well a lot of my friends are online, or I can talk to them online, so it hasn’t affected them too much. I’d say [going back to] school had affected them more. It is harder to go out and meet people near me, though.”

Silas Bisbee: “I feel like my relationships have been put to the test and seeing and even talking to people is hard. I am okay with this because when you get through it you see how strong your friendships really are.”

Kylise Carino: “My relationships/friendships haven’t really changed much since quarantine and I feel indifferent.”

If friendships have failed you, at least over this time period you may have been able to bond with a pet.

Question: If you’ve let go of or simply stopped talking to any of your friends while in isolation, why have you done so?

Anonymous: “I’m admittedly not great at keeping up with people and I seldomly text first. I fear annoying others so I normally just kind of wait for other people to text me first. Only a couple people actually made an effort to talk to me, so those were the ones I seem to have stayed friends with. “

Hannah Rhodes: “I haven’t necessarily dropped anyone on purpose or stopped talking to anyone on purpose. It’s hard to stay in contact when we aren’t allowed to hang out or really be around our friends, even when school was in session regularly.”

Jaeden Olivo (an online student): “Mostly because I forget they exist.”

Silas Bisbee: “I haven’t dropped people on purpose really. Relating back to the first question, if we weren’t close before this only drew us farther apart.”

Kylise Carino: “I have not stopped talking or dropped any of my friends.”

As I’m writing, it’s already been announced that our school will be testing out a new hybrid schedule for the next couple months. With half of us being separated from each other, it poses yet another threat to our socialization.

Question: How do you see this new hybrid schedule affecting your current or future relationships with others?

Anonymous: “I’m not happy with the schedule. All of what few friends I have in my classes just so happen to be on the opposite day of me. The only reason I even wanted to go back to in person school to begin with was so I could see my friends, so now it feels pointless to go at all.”

Alex Colombero: “I feel like the hybrid schedule will make it harder to make friends in classes and will make friends feel less close to one another because they won’t be going to school together anymore.”

Hannah Rhodes: “In all honesty, I don’t see the hybrid schedule working out. I feel like most of my friends are in the beginning of the alphabet whereas I’m in the end. Also, most of my first period is one side of the alphabet so it’s going to be really hard to maintain those relationships with those people when I’m never getting the chance to see them.”

Silas Bisbee: “I feel as if the hybrid schedule will continue to push limits with some friends that may not be at school [on the same days] but will bring some friends closer being the only one they may be able to talk to.”

Kylise Carino: “To be honest I don’t think it’s going to affect anything, and I don’t really care that much about it besides the fact that most of my friends aren’t going to school. So, I guess that will be very hard for me and make me want to not go to school.”

We’ve yet to see just what this new schedule will be like, but from the sound of their comments, not many of us are so happy about it. For our own sake, as well as the teachers, let’s hope this doesn’t have to continue past October 9.

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