The new year is often seen as a time for closure and a fresh start, but the raging COVID-19 pandemic means the beginning of 2021 may not feel as hopeful as in years past.

"There won't be one moment where everything is better," said Jacek Kolacz, an assistant research scientist, and member of the Kinsey Institute Traumatic Stress Research Consortium and the Socioneural Physiology Laboratory at Indiana University Bloomington. "People need to prepare for gradual change."

Kolacz and colleagues at the Kinsey Institute have been studying how the pandemic has been affecting people's lives. He is available to discuss how people can set realistic expectations ahead of 2021, and the potential long-term effects of the trauma people have experienced as a result of the pandemic.