Lockdown is more than it appears to be

May 7, 2020

For those of us who have relatives in off-limits senior nursing facilities, life has changed dramatically.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, visits by family and friends were curtailed nearly two months ago.

People do not realize how much our relatives rely on us even though some have around-the-clock care.

My father is a resident of Manor House in Seaford and my mother-in-law lives at The Moorings at Lewes.

While they are on lockdown, we are too.

My wife and one of her sisters paid visits to their mother almost daily. It's an important lifeline that has been cut off.

My mother-in-law is confused about what's going on.

My father, who is recovering from a fall, is away from the comforts of his apartment and is in the skilled nursing wing undergoing therapy. It's like a double hit for him.

As they grow older, roles are reversed as our parents rely on us for comfort and support as we relied on them as children. That cushion of comfort has been removed, and we all suffer for it.

Residents who are fortunate enough to have relatives nearby rely on that extra one-on-one support that nurses, as dedicated as they are, cannot always provide.

Because our loved ones in nursing facilities are the most at risk, we understand why visits have been stopped. But as the isolation nears two months, we are grasping for any positive sign that some provisions can be made to see our loved ones.

Phone calls, cards and video chats are not the same as sit-down, in-person visits.



  • Ron MacArthur has lived and worked in Sussex County all his life. As a journalist for more than 40 years, he has covered everything from county and town meetings to presidential visits. He also has a unique perspective having served as an elected official and lived on both sides of the county.

    Contact Ron at

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