What a tremendously tumultuous week it has been in the world. At the beginning of last week you and your partner probably found yourself doing the “normal” stuff of everyday life. The morning school drop-off, the commute to work, shaking a new acquaintances hand, having a date night out, getting together with friends, not using hand sanitizer every five minutes and even touching your own face without a second thought. Then COVID-19 got real, and now you and your partner are living in a completely different world. This new world is full of unknowns and full of fear and fear can activate anger, sadness, and a whole host of difficult thoughts, emotions, and behaviors.
Uncertainty creates massive amounts of stress. It is unlikely that you and your partner are having the same experience of this situation, because you are two unique people, with two unique stories and therefore two unique ways of interpreting and then handling stress. The uniqueness of how you are coping individually creates a ripe context for conflict in couple relationships. It is easy to feel that your partner is “overreacting” either with “too much” emotion and concern or “to little” emotion and concern.
We understand this dynamic and are experiencing our own struggles managing the stress of the unknown related to COVID-19. Yet, your differences in this stress (and in all of life) do not have to create a spirit of disconnection in your relationship. Part of the beauty of being in a partnered relationship is having the support and love of your partner to get through tough times. You and your partner have the opportunity to help get one another through this time. Rather than letting COVID-19 bring distance in your relationship, we suggest that you take this opportunity to move towards the one another.
What if in these weeks of social distancing you and your partner spent some intentional time on your relationship? Use this time to grow together, even in the midst of your different griefs and losses in this process, you can connect in the disconnect.
Do you need a helpful resource to start connecting in the disconnect? Do you want to keep living a love story especially in this stressful time? Start our couples health and wellness course: Create Your Couple Story, and continue living your love story today.