Due to the coronavirus’s pandemic, couples have been spending much longer time together than usual. Busy lives have come to a halt, and suddenly there’s more time to spare. Marriages now are being challenged by this situation. Because couples are almost always together 24/7, the tiny imperfections seem to magnify, the tension in the household rises quickly, and suddenly the feeling gets stuffy.
According to Phillip Lee M.D. and Diane Rudolph M.D., “Quarantine together is a magnifying glass on the relationship. If it’s really, really good, then it will be spring break, a walk in the park. If it’s really bad, already at each other’s throats, then the number of negative interactions will spike like the bad coronavirus curve on TV.”
It is unsure how long the pandemic will last, so it is essential to nurture these relationships. Here are some tips on how to survive the pandemic.
Give Criticisms A Break
Right now is a stressful time for everyone. It is not a good time to bring back old issues, especially those that concern finances. It may only lead to serious arguments. If these issues have been resolved in the past, avoid bringing it back on the table.
Instead, appreciate the everyday little things. Even if your spouse has been making you coffee for all the years you are married, still, say a word of appreciation. It will make things better. Remember, gratitude is the memory of the heart. Also, try doing an activity where at night, you think of three things that you are most grateful for your partner for each day.
Plan Your Routine
Planning tasks ahead of time allow the leveling of expectations. Most often than not, fights begin when there is an unmet expectation. Delegate the job of cleaning, cooking, laundry, and other household chores. In this way, no one carries single-handedly the burden of running the household.
Also, plan other activities to add excitement to the daily routine. Schedule movie nights for the entire family, maybe once a week. Board games are also a good idea to increase family bonding while staying at home. Remember not to be too tight on the schedule; as much as it is for everyone’s welfare, it might be the root of the argument.
Still Allow Space
Being together almost every hour of every day may seem to constrict the atmosphere. To avoid this feeling, allow each other some personal time. The space you allow can be room to breathe, to refresh the mind, and to think clearly. Some people need time for themselves to recharge and re-center themselves.
If you have hobbies that you can do in the comforts of your home, do it. It helps in putting yourself in the right headspace. You can do lots of things like reading, painting, crafting, crocheting, baking, and even sports! Just do anything that can help you feel better.
Intimate Or Not
For most, it may be a good time for some intimacy with your partner. It can be a break from the ordinary every day and can help get your mind off the unpleasant things that are happening. Experts say that it is a vital part of marriage.
But then, it is not unusual if your partner is not into it. The stress caused by external factors can affect the desire to engage in sexual activity. Always respect the invisible boundary and remember that no means no.
With or without a pandemic, it’s essential always to communicate. Misunderstandings, more often than not, emerge from miscommunication. Your partners cannot read minds, so tell me them what you want or what you need. Don’t expect your partners to know what to do if you don’t tell them the problem.
Sometimes, partners look from different lenses and see the same thing but on different perspectives. To be able to solve this, partners should communicate to stay on the same page.
If, after communicating, varying points of view still pose a problem, handle the argument well. Don’t quarrel when you are both raging. Words can be twice as sharp when in a heated situation. Allow an hour to collect your thoughts and to breathe before starting the discussion. This way, you can control the situation where the kids don’t have to witness it.
Take extra caution in arguing during a pandemic, because it is a stressful situation; everything can be blown out of proportion. Add in extra patience than usual. Also, be more empathetic towards your spouse.
This global health crisis is becoming an economic crisis, and this pandemic is a stressful situation. This tense situation inevitably affects marriages, as well. Times may be hard, but working together is key in keeping the boat afloat amidst the rough sea.