Home quarantine: A time to test and strengthen family ties


Many Chinese people have experienced home quarantine due to the coronavirus outbreak since late January. As it coincided with the Spring Festival – China's most important time for family reunion – many have spent more time than they ever have with their families and sometimes extended families.

Young people usually just stay at home for a week during the Spring Festival. But with the 'holiday" being unexpectedly extended several times, staying home has become something precious as well as challenging.

Quarantine allows for more bonding 

It's estimated that the coronavirus has a 14-day incubation period. To contain the spread of the virus, working-from-home has been encouraged in many companies and organizations. Many people view this time as a rare opportunity to stay close to their family members.

As a news editor based in Beijing, Qing Qing has spent a lot more time working and staying at home. Cooking is her hobby and she told CGTN that home quarantine has given her more time to cook for her family.

Qing Qing's culinary skills on display. /CGTN

Qing Qing's culinary skills on display. /CGTN

A mother of two based in Shandong said that although her children sometimes disturbed her work at home, she's learnt to manage. "I've now developed a calm attitude towards them. I seldom yell at them as I did before," she told CGTN in an online interview.

On Chinese social media platforms, many people are saying they cherish and are grateful for this extended period of time to spend with their families. 

"I do cherish this period of time that I spend with my beloved parents. I also feel so grateful for people who fight against the virus on the front line. It's because of them, we can now have a peaceful life at home,”commented "Jianghaonizai."

Quarantine puts kinship to test

Due to different perspectives and ways of life, some parent-child relationships have come under strain during this longer-than-usual "holiday."

"Don't quarrel with your family during the epidemic" is currently a hot topic on China's Sina Weibo, a popular microblogging service. The topic has now attracted more than 250 million views, with more than four million comments. 

Screenshot of the hot topic "Don't quarrel with your family during the epidemic" on Sina Weibo.

Screenshot of the hot topic "Don't quarrel with your family during the epidemic" on Sina Weibo.

Weibo user "Aicijiojuan" lamented they're exhausted from arguing with parents on why they're still single, while "Manxing - Huairen" does not understand why it's so hard to be himself/herself, saying: "My parents don't allow me to get up late or sleep late. And after meals, taking a walk is a must. I have to say, their love for me is just too heavy."

When there's a problem, there's a solution. People have also been offering advice such as choosing conversation topics that both parents and children like or watching a television program that's appealing to all family members.