Relationships are facing new challenges with the Covid-19 pandemic forcing everyone to spend more time at home in confined spaces with loved ones for longer periods than we are all used to normally.
While we often at first instant feel that new problems have arisen from the new circumstances, actually it is the new circumstances that are forcing us to face the old issues that may already have pre-existed even prior to being confined at home.
Marriage and co-habitation partnership have taken a toll from Covid-19, with divorce inquiries reported to be on the rise as stay-home measures have pushed couples off the edge (SMCP, 10 May 2020).
Adding to the complication of having to face each other for extended periods of time in a limited space is having kids to mind and home school... sounds like a recipe for many domestic fights, screams and cries... but, all is not lost
This article seeks to provide some simple steps to relieve the tension and challenges people are facing at home during social distancing.
1) HEART TO HEART TALK - Take time to talk heart to heart with your partner or loved one without kids or other family members around - sometimes, feelings of frustration, anger and other unresolved emotions can be clouded by third party interference and external distractions/interruptions ... many parents find it hard to have time to intimately talk through and discuss underlying issues without a child or domestic helper around... this time to sit down and really air out concerns and thrash out problems is very important to keep the health of the relationship steady and strong. Regular catch-ups/dates at home or out in a quiet place with no mobile phone/work/whatsapp disturbances can really help to heal the relationship. If you have a partner who feels like running a mile at the sound of having to "talk about problems", perhaps not being so blatant and blunt about it when setting up the date with a "we need to talk", rather creatively weave the issues up while on a gentle relaxing stroll in nature when both are feeling relaxed and peaceful while not in the thick of the action of home and concerns.
2) Digging deep within for UNCONDITIONAL LOVE even when we are at our weakest - sometimes you want to argue and fight over things that may seem so important and upsetting in the heat of the moment, however if we all take a step back and realise that all of us are feeling particularly weaker than usual these days with these unprecedented tough challenging living environment... we go back to the marriage/partnership vows of "love you through sickness and health, for better and for worse", this particular instance of hardship is exactly the "worse" and "sickness" scenario that the marriage vows were referring to...
3) MAKE GRATITUDE YOUR ATTITUDE - did we start to become so used to each other within the family that we have forgotten to say thank you and be grateful of what everybody does for each other anymore? Some would say that there is no need to be too polite within the family, however a simple "thank you" to acknowledge the little and big gestures, actions and words we receive from our loved ones in the family will start shifting our awareness from one of focusing on the wrongs and flaws of another to a feeling of gratefulness for all the good that they normally do that we may have started taken for granted of. Cooking, cleaning, helping each other and just being there present for each other is good reason to be giving and receiving thanks for everyday.
"If we only say one prayer a day, let it be thank you"