“I could spend every day of my life next to you!” Did you ever find yourself looking at your partner with love in your eyes, uttering those words? If so, the COVID-19 quarantine is about to test whether or not you really meant it.
Many couples are having difficulty navigating the stressful and hopefully temporary new normal. Do you find that being in close proximity to your spouse for weeks at a time without anything to break up the monotony is getting on your nerves? If so, you’re not alone.
This modern pandemic will go down in history as a deadly virus that closed borders cleared grocery store shelves, and separated friends and family during self-isolation. From family ties, romantic relationships, and your finances, sheltering in a place or being under lockdown orders affects every part of your life.
Here are 5 ways COVID-19 might be affecting your love life and what you can do about it.
1. Stress and anxiety are making you miserable
There is nothing that kills romance faster than stress. Stress can increase your chances of depression, sour your libido, and cause you to lash out at your spouse in ways you otherwise wouldn’t.
Couples who are worried about the future or who are getting cabin fever together may find that stress is negatively affecting their time together.
2. Your loved one isn’t taking it seriously
You are self-quarantining. You are serious about flattening the curve. You’re staying inside until further notice. But your spouse? They’re going for walks, heading to the movie theater, and saying things like, “It’s just the flu! Why is everyone freaking out so much?”
It can be incredibly frustrating if your spouse is not taking the COVID-19 quarantine as seriously as you are. Not to mention how damaging it can be for both your health and finances.
Many countries have ordered shut-downs of nonessential businesses, meaning that you or your spouse may soon be out of a job, if you aren’t already. This can put a financial strain on your relationship. You may be left wondering how you are going to afford groceries, pay your mortgage, make car payments, or pay off your debts.
On the other hand, those that are still working amid the pandemic may also be under an immense amount of pressure. These are the ones who risk getting sick every day and who have to implement life-saving sanitation methods while on the job. No doubt, this can also be incredibly stressful.
3. Your spouse is sick
It can you live together, and your spouse has contracted the coronavirus, it is only natural to feel afraid. You may worry about your partner’s health or fear that you will catch their sickness.
Living with an unknown illness can create an overwhelming sense of dread and destroy the peaceful relationship you once had.
4. You’re separated from your partner
Another way the COVID-19 quarantine is affecting personal relationships is by separating loved ones. You may be overcome with worry if you are separated from your friends and family during self-isolation, or maybe you just miss hanging out with your loved ones.
Many couples who do not live together have also been separated during the pandemic and feel a sense of panic about when they will see each other again.
5. Future uncertainties are making you reconsider things
When something big happens in life, it usually makes us reconsider what we’ve been doing with our lives. We start to think about what’s truly important to us in the grand scheme of things.
During this time, you may realize that you love your partner more than anything. Maybe you’ve decided that when this is all over, you want to settle down, get married, and start a family. Couples who feel this way will likely come out stronger on the other end of the pandemic.
But some may have the opposite reaction. They may decide that life is too short to be in an unhappy relationship and break things off mid-chaos.
The COVID-19 Silver Lining
It’s easy to look at everything bad or stressful in the world right now, but it’s important to be optimistic. Think of it this way: There are worse places you could be than hunkered down with the love of your life for the next couple of weeks. Instead of looking at everything that feels scary in your life, use this as an opportunity to look for the good.
You may find there are some unexpected benefits to being in isolation with your spouse, such as:
- Finding new and creative ways to have date night indoors
- Spending more time together as a family
- Realizing what’s truly important in life
- Finding new ways to express love
- Trying a new sex position every day
- Devoting more time to your hobbies
- Cooking together
- Taking an online class to learn something new
- Playing games
- Seeing who can make the other laugh harder
- Doing at-home couples workouts together
Being on lockdown with your spouse can bring you closer if you let it. If you do, you will both come out stronger on the other side of this.
There is no doubt about it: COVID-19 can affect your marriage for better or worse. Do all that’s in your power to make sure it’s for the better by choosing to be an optimist, building one another up during times of stress, and taking care of your mental and physical health.