With the coronavirus issues going on around the world, many families have been stuck at home together more than they would normally. Actually, let’s say, a LOT more than they would normally be. Even in the healthiest marriages, that can take a toll.
Under normal circumstances, household members typically come and go, with kids in school, parents going to work, or one parent going to the grocery store, or shuttling kids around to sports. But the quarantine has resulted in shutdowns of nearly all normal activities.
There’s simply nowhere to go and nothing to do. Kids are at home, spouses may have lost their jobs, income is reduced to zero, and that alone can bring on marital problems. A lot of times, we would recommend a family vacation! But of course, even that is not possible now.
Some couples may welcome the extra time together and enjoy each other’s company, perhaps making dinners together or working on some of those long-put-off household projects. For others, being cooped up together at home could lead you to getting along worse than ever.
Many of the activities that are now online include marriage counseling. If you find yourself in the group of couples that is getting along terribly, consider seeking out some free marriage counseling online.
Yes, you might not be able to meet in person in a therapist’s office, but you and your spouse can still talk things out with a professional.
Some couples may be impacted negatively by differing opinions on how to handle the virus-related issues. To mask in public or not to mask in public? Is the population being controlled or is staying at home an exercise in doing what’s best for the general public? Just because a couple is married, doesn’t mean that their political or personal opinions are the same.
One part of the couple could have anxiety about being confined together, while the other part of the couple might have anxiety about going out in public. Add any kids to the mix, and it’s no surprise that many relationships are struggling.
To avoid quarantine relationship drama, try to realize that everyone is “stuck” together and most people are probably not happy about it. Everything may be on pause right now, but sooner or later things will change, so try being as positive as possible. Keep some spaces in your house separate, so that everyone has their own “zones” that they can go to to close a door and get away. If tensions are high and you just can’t talk at all, take a break. If you can afford gas, get in the car and go for a ride. Maybe a long one if you need to. There may not be a destination open when you get to wherever you’re going, but that mini “road trip” just may be what you need to get you back home and feeling better.