For a lot of us being locked up with our partner and working from home together is a novel situation and might bring up a variety of emotions. It is a welcome respite for some couples as they get to spend more quality couple time which was interrupted by daily chores, responsibilities, long office hours, parenting etc.
Now that we are in close quarters with our partner, how do we segregate various aspects like our work, relationship and me-time?
Rituals To Navigate Transitions
Rituals bring a sense of security, familiarity and stability especially for those who are creatures of habits and feel overwhelmed in chaos and uncertainty. For couples, rituals can help them establish a structure to their routines as couples and as working professionals during this lockdown.
- Wake up at your normal time.
- Transition to work- separate workstations, check-in with each other on breaks, having a meal together
- Me-time- prioritizing alone time helps to replenish and recharge ourselves so that we can give our best to our family and work.
- Date nights at home or over video call.
- Mealtimes without screens.
- State of the Union meeting- A term coined by relationship expert Dr Gottman. It is a once-weekly meeting to discuss stressors, frustration, challenges with partner.
- Fun couple activities like playing a board or card game, watching a new movie or series together
-Sticking to sleep routine.
What about those couples who relied on the emotional distance and space that they are used to? The couples who could escape from taking a look at the cracks in their relationship? In China, the number of domestic violence cases reported to the local police tripled in February during lockdown, being forced to stay together in confined spaces might bring up-
- Cannot brush relationship challenges under the carpet
- Unresolved emotional wounds
- Feeling trapped
- Abusive/emotionally neglectful relationships might escalate to become more unstable and volatile
If both partners are emotionally receptive, taking the time out to open the can of worms can benefit their relationship
Seeking the help of neighbours, loved ones, therapists or abuse helplines can provide support and relief in cases of unhealthy relationships.
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