The saying goes: "you don't know someone until you live with them." And man, no truer words were spoken. Coping and coupling during the Pandemic has been one for the books. I admit, for someone who is pro-solitude, it was a mental adjustment to share a space with my significant other 24/7 (currently, two months and counting). My philosophy about cohabitation altogether is unorthodox, but that's another story, lol. Anyway, to be quite honest, my experience hasn't been that bad. My fiancé and I both have been rough, ugly, yet communicative; I know we're coming out on the other side, together. On the other hand, many don't have the luxury to say the same.
According to this article in Forbes, only 18% of surveyed couples reported satisfaction in communication with their partner during the Pandemic. To oversimplify - that ain't good, Saints. What I do realize is that global sheltering has dropped the scales from our eyes regarding the very things affecting us locally - and that includes all things in-house (heh).
My fiancé and I have managed quite well under the stress, anxiety, and pressures tagged to Us because of the Coronavirus. We aren't perfect, but what we have is worth it, so we're swimming with the currents on this one. Here are some strategies we've been doing and will continue to implement as we see fit. May these 7 tips aid in your journey as well.
1) The New Workout Plan: Fitness.
Now, I know I haven't gained the Pandemic 15 exactly, but your girl has been REAL comfortable being home. We both have. So we desperately needed all the subsidies we can get to keep us energized and motivated. And since all the gyms are closed, we took our talents to the local park! We both have sports injuries, including my bouts with sciatica, so being cooped up in the house in a no-go. We've made the commitment to go out as much as we can, and it's pretty sweet to have a built-in accountability partner.
2) Neighbors Know My Name: S E X.
TMI - sure, but we're family. So yes, have as much (safe and consensual) sex as possible. It's natural, healthy, and creates intimacy. Not everyone is verbal in partnerships; this could be a specific love language for some. In an article he wrote for Psychology Today, marriage and family counselor, Dr. Michael Gurian states that sex produces oxytocin, a bonding chemical that is essential for couples in the short and long term. so uhh, get to gettin', lol!
3) Soul Food: Cooking Together.
Although we miss having the option of eating out, planning meals and cooking together has been fun. Old faithfuls take the guesswork out, and trying something new make for spontaneous memories. This tip makes for great practice for those who can't cook and want to learn. You're home, so this is as good of a time as any to get in the kitchen and explore!
4) Let's Work: Profession & Passion.
We're both working from home indefinitely, so to capitalize our bonding time, we "work together." We set our Google Home Mini to play music or to one our favorite podcasts as we type away. And since we're now both content creators, ½ of OverSaturated: The Podcast he is, we plan and exchange ideas entre nous. It's been a pleasure having someone of like-mindedness to talk shop with and together, grow passionately.
5) Bills, Bills, Bills: Finances.
The subject of money in relationships is uncomfortable, yet necessary. Trying to wedding plan, pay bills, budget AND save, it's more than enough to drive a wedge between any couple. We've had our moments, but making ourselves vulnerable and expressive about those uncertainties solved more problems than it created. Word to the wise: be honest, be patience and stay within your means.
6) Alone With You: Focus on the "i" in Quality Time.
Being confined with a mate 24/7 doesn't mean you have to be together all the time. All partnerships need those normal breaks - that when the time comes to reconnect with your boo - it can provide for a sense of freshness. Earlier, I mentioned that I'm pro-solitude. I love spending time with myself, and my fiancé respects that. When he has to record for his podcast or is delving into a new show he's interested in, I leave him to it. We've learned how to tolerate our personal needs and differences. There have been days were we intentionally work and relax separately, and we have been the better for it. It’s worth making the extra effort to be more conscientious with your space and any persons worth their salt, extends those same efforts to their mate.