It’s just me and my partner who live together which is awesome.
But now with COVID-19 we have been in the same apartment for the last three weeks 24/7!
This is a really stressful time for everyone (thanks COVID-19) and we have started to get annoyed at each other over little insignificant things (such as ways we do house cleaning ect.) While I feel healthy and happy in our relationship I do worry how this social isolation will affect our relationship three months down the line. Will we continue to get more and more annoyed with each other?…
Anyone else going through this?
Anyone have any tips on how we can maintain a healthy relationship woth our own space while being together 24/7?
I can’t speak from personal experience as I’m not currently in a relationship (and haven’t been for a long time) but I feel like communication is always key. Express your concerns to your partner and try and come up with solutions that you both agree on together.
I really like the idea in this article about designating areas of the house to certain things, like a work area, a privacy area and relaxing area. If it is feasible in your apartment, maybe try and designate certain areas for each of you to spend alone time some nights?
Oooh thanks @goldenrose what a great article!
I really agree communication is so important I’m definitely going to be as open as I can about how I’m feeling and my concerns about having space.
Definitely going to try and designate our areas and we’re lucky we have two areas to spend time in.
I liked the part in the article about spending time together that isn’t work or cleaning such as a hobby together we used to play a lot of card games while travelling maybe we can get back into that!
Glad it could help! Let us know how you go 🙂
@curiousss I can imagine what a challenging time this will be for your relationship. The psychotherapist Esther Perel who specialises in intimate relationships spoke in a podcast recently about how this time will be a kind of pressure cooker for relationships. Basically, wherever you were headed- you may just get there a little faster. I hope you will be kind to yourself and stay rooted in the knowledge that we are humans responding normally to an abnormal situation. And if the two of you can get through this, you can probably get through anything. Good luck!!
Hey @curiousss oh my, my partner and I have been living together for 4 months now and heck is isolation weird and funny (and sometimes super annoying) to do together.
I am working from home full time at the moment and my partner has gone onto a one week on / one week off roster which means we are home together for 9 days straight every other week EEK.
Basically we had to put in rules like when he comes home (at 3.30 / 4.00) I am still working for another hour so he can come say hi but NO it is not a good time for a chat – I still have an hour or two of work to do. We are lucky our house is big enough that we each have our own rooms on-top of the shared bedroom, but if you are in an apartment I’d suggest creating your own individual spaces that where you can escape each other – you can use pot plants or furniture as dividers if you have the room!
As a couple we allow ourselves to express all emotions i.e. sometimes we just crack the shits and the other person will hold the space for that – it’s never personal, we are all human and we always apologise. I’ve lost track of the times where I’ve had to say ‘sorry I was grumpy’. It is okay to bicker a little and like @earth_mama said it will just get you to where you are meant to be a little quicker.
So, we celebrate our one year anniversary on Sunday and we’ve had to be creative about what that looks like and make it special for us despite all the madness. One thing we are trying to strengthen our relationship with is cooking together one night a week – learning a completely new recipe and doing it together. So far it’s been fun and it’s nice to learn something together.
@earthmama So true about this time being a cooker pressure for relationships! Thank you for the kind thoughts.
Update!@goldenrose So far we are doing better after we had a very big discussion (I think writing this here made me realise how much I needed to talk it out with them) the other night about our relationship during isolation and how we need to make time to be together and be present with each other.
I spoke a lot about how I felt, what I was worried about and my expectations and we both agreed that it’s especially important during this time to put an extra effort into our relationship and to check in with how we are feeling. Since I’ve talked to my partner about how we’re feeling I have seen a major shift in their effort to check in with me which has been really nice.
Some of the things we do differently is putting the screens away to spend more time together, we go for walks to the grocery store, spend more time cooking and eating proper meals together, check in on our feelings, and we don’t take it personally when we get the shits and get grumpy just like @stephaniaaaah talks about (very good advice btw)!
Lets hope this lasts!! If anyone else is going through this please feel free to share your experiences or if you have any thoughts please share 🙂
@stephaniaaaah I absolutely love what you wrote about how you allow all emotions and that the other person holds space for that. It sounds like you work really hard at your communication and it is so lovely to hear.
@curiousss well done to you for talking it out with your partner. How great to hear that you are already having some positive shifts.
I am full of hope that we are going to come out of this time with a renewed understanding of one another and a more comprehensive insight into the need for communication within relationships, as well as the plethora of emotions one can go through in a single day. As humans, we can be so afraid of being fully and truly seen and I think we get pretty good at hiding our full selves from people we are trying to impress. Whilst it is scary to be spending so much time together, I am hopeful that we will be less afraid going forward once we realise someone can spend 24/7 with us and still want to be with us.
@curiousss Oh that’s so good to hear! Glad you guys were able to talk about it and make a positive shift 🙂
I’m in this boat too! All of your stories and advice has been so comforting to read. My partner is working from home for the moment and I’m still heading to work every day as usual. It’s a bit of a struggle, he hates being trapped at home (understandably!) and all of our friends have lost their jobs, so we’ve got a big pile of survivors guilt happening too. We’ve also kind of run out of things to talk about, anyone else experiencing this? I don’t think we realised how much we require other forms of entertainment/distraction to keep us going. The pandemic is just so all-consuming that we’ve struggled to talk about anything else.
@sextronaut I’m the same with running out of things to say! I’ve resumed a few hobbies that I’ve left behind, so it’s nice to have that to talk about, but I never realised how much of what I have to say comes from my day-to-day routine.
I don’t live with my partner, but we do stay over one another’s houses a lot, and we both live with parents. I’ve found that, tempting as it might be to take more breaks than usual, it’s helpful to communicate to both my parents and partner that just because they see me at home doesn’t mean I’m relaxing. I think explaining that, and making it clear that I need to prioritise my own work day is helpful.
It kind of comes back to what everyone else has said – clear communication is key!
Hey @sextronaut and @aunt_flo, I completely agree with running out of things to talk about! When you are both out at work for the day, even if it’s little things that happened you still have something to share and ask “how was your day?” When you are in the same house all day it gets a little tricky! I think it’s all been about realising heightened emotions are not a reflection on us, it’s just a very odd situation to be in.
Luckily, as things start to re-open my boyfriend has been returning to the office a few days a week. Are you still working from home and sharing the space?
Hi @curiousss not sure if this is super relevant anymore because were sort of stepping out of lockdown in NSW at least #prayfornothirdwave #wearamask #gettested. But…
Something that my partner and I did that helped bring a little bit of spice to our relationship during COVID19 lockdown and isolation period was being a bit more experimental in the bedroom and exploring different kinks we’d thought about in the past. Although, usually we’d do this after sort of exercising and eating healthy regularly and when we had time, otherwise my sex drive just goes totally out of the window aha!
Hi @PotPlant Thanks for sharing! I love to hear that!
My partner and I are still working from home nearly one year on and we have worked hard (through trial and error and LOTS of communication) on making positive habits of working from home together and now we bicker much less haha!
@curiousss how are you finding working from home? Do you think you will ever return to the office? I guess my situation is a little different as I am living alone, however when I was living with my partner during full lockdown I totally agree that communication was key. Luckily for us we are able to live a semi-normal life in Australia now! We found it important to still schedule ‘date nights’ and got creative with things like virtual painting classes or cocktail and games nights.