Relationship issues during Covid-19: Intimacy

This is article 2 of a 5 part series on dealing with mental health and relationship issues during Covid-19 in partnership with ReGain. You can check out part 1 of the series here –

In our last post we briefly discussed Covid-19 and the effect that it can have on our mental health and in turn our relationships. It’s important to nurture all of our relationships, especially during such trying times, but one of the most important relationships we have in our lives is with our significant other.

The relationship we have with our spouse or partner is one of the relationships that defines a lot of who we are. So, what do you do if the stress of the pandemic, and being together all of the time takes a toll on your most intimate relationship?

Losing emotional intimacy

There are different things that can happen in a relationship that can lead to loss of intimacy. Emotional intimacy is one of the ways we connect to our other half, and when that emotional intimacy is lost the entire relationship can start imploding.

One of the things that can lead to losing that emotional intimacy during a time of crisis like the Covid-19 pandemic is overexposure. If you’re both working from home, or dealing with the kids, or just trying to deal with what is going on, it can be difficult to maintain any semblance of spark between you.

One of the biggest factors in losing emotional intimacy is emotional neglect. This occurs when you don’t tend to, prioritise, or consider your partner’s emotional needs. It goes without saying that this can be the beginning of the end for many couples, but does this happening during a pandemic make it less of someone’s fault and more just circumstantial?

relationship issues during Covid-19

What if the sexual intimacy stops?

It’s possible that you can still have sexual intimacy with your partner despite there being a lack of emotional connection. But is it healthy? I don’t have the answers, but seeking help from the professionals at ReGain can help you decipher this. This article from them is a good read and a good place to start.

What about not having any need or want for sexual intimacy?

There are different factors that can affect your sex life with your partner. Exhaustion is a very valid reason for not wanting to be intimate, especially now when you have what seems like hundreds of things to juggle! But what do you do when you feel rested and still have no desire?

An issue that can afflict many couples and often goes unspoken is health. From a lowered libido because of mental health issues to a serious illness; many couples don’t speak about the reasons for their lack of desire out of fear of the worst. Sometimes it can be a simple conversation about different needs and wants that came make a difference. As a lot of times we just want to be heard.

The importance of communication

Communication is key, but there are many times when you just don’t know where to begin. Worse yet, when you do attempt to communicate you end up fighting about everything other than the problem at hand.

You bring up the kids, the stress of confinement, your financial situation; but you don’t talk about the deeper issues affecting the changes in your dynamic and intimacy.

This is why it’s a good idea to bring an objective and impartial third party into any discussions. You don’t even have to leave the house. You can find couples counselling from a licensed therapist at sites like ReGain.

If you’re looking for help on relationship issues during Covid-19 make sure to check out the site and read the other articles in the series.

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