Here’s an Understatement for You:
The Pandemic of 2020 Has Been Challenging and Stressful


But as much bad news as there is on the television and online, every day, we are witness to acts of kindness and compassion in our communities. We’ve seen reports of grandchildren playing tick-tac-toe on the glass front doors of their grandparents’ homes. A small coffee roaster has changed its business model and is now delivering freshly-roasted coffee beans to housebound people. Distilleries all over the world are re-tooling production to make hand-sanitizer. And penguins in Chicago got a chance to check out the other exhibits at the Shedd Aquarium.

Still, people are under all kinds of pressure at the moment. Regular stressors like relationship problems, parenting challenges, and such haven’t disappeared, while health-related stress, financial stress, and the stress brought about by social distancing are piling on.

Now more than ever, it’s important that we watch out for each other. Checking in with our co-workers, friends, family, and neighbors can make a world of difference. If you notice that someone you work with seems stressed-out, or overwhelmed, talk to them. They might just need someone to lend them an ear. If they need more serious assistance, here are some resources you can pass on:

  • Suicide Prevention: A 24-hour, toll-free, confidential suicide-prevention hotline is available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. Calls are routed to the crisis center nearest you. Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or check out this website.
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health: The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA’s) National Helpline provides treatment referrals. This program is also known as, the Treatment Referral Routing Service. This Helpline provides 24-hour free and confidential treatment referral for mental health and substance use disorders, prevention, and recovery. Help is available in English and Spanish. Call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or check out this website. For more information on all kinds of treatment for addictions and mental health issues, you can access the “find treatment” page of SAMHSA.
  • State-Level Opioid Treatment: Find treatment programs in your state that treat addiction and dependence on opioids such as heroin or prescription pain relievers. Check the Opioid Treatment Program Directory here.