‘A Week of Snow Days’? Ha! Families Deal With Cabin Fever

Not all cabin fever families are dealing with toddlers. College students have been sent home, repopulating their parents’ empty nests. Other adult children, sometimes with friends and fiancés in tow, are turning their parents’ kitchens into co-working spaces.

But the reunions, at least initially, are careful. Many young adults said they were scared they could be taking the virus home to their parents, who may be more susceptible to the outbreak because older people are more at risk.

“All my Stanford friends and I are self-quarantining in our own rooms away from our families after getting booted off campus,” said Netta Wang, 22, a Stanford University senior who returned to her parents’ house in San Mateo, Calif. Her parents leave trays of food at her bedroom door.

Gillian Lurie, 20, had a great time on a study-abroad semester in Florence, Italy, but as coronavirus swept through that country, the program was shut down. Already on spring break, she traveled through Spain, Germany, Portugal and Ireland. This month, she came home.

“She managed to have a great time, but she brought home a souvenir,” her mother, Lisa Lurie, said. “A little something called the coronavirus.”

Now Lisa Lurie and her husband, Brian, who run Cancer Be Glammed, a lifestyle company that supports women coping with cancer, are quarantining their daughter in a back room of their Pittsburgh home. They communicate via FaceTime and drop meals at the door.

“The only thing keeping me sane is online mahjong,” Lisa Lurie said.

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