Staying connected at a time when everyone is expected to follow stay-at-home orders and social distancing can be a challenge for many couples, family members, and friends. In a romantic relationship, the strain is even more felt by couples who used to spend more time together before COVID-19 struck.
With fear and anxiety bringing new challenges to couples, it’s important to take proactive steps to maintain the status quo and prevent the relationship from buckling under the pressure. So, if you find yourself in a similar situation of being distanced from a loved one, here’s how you can make sure the feelings don’t fade.
Share and Enjoy Your Interests Together More Often
Many people start to develop romantic feelings for one another because of shared opinions and interests. There’s no reason why you can’t enjoy the same things in different ways long distance.
Streaming services, such as Bigo TV, Netflix, and YouTube will always be a preferred entertainment option for many people, so why not use them to carve out some alone time with your partner? You can schedule a Friday film night, share links to music you’re listening to as you work from home, or go live while gaming so your partner can watch you crush it on PUBG or Mobile Legends.
Plan for the Long Term, Not the Short Term
What’s happening in the world may not be within your control, but that doesn’t mean you should stop thinking about your upcoming plans together.
Start with your travel plans as early as now and discuss the places you’d like to see with your partner. Maybe you’d like to go skiing, go to a country that’s sunny all year, or conquer a mountain together.
Even simple long-term planning, such as films to watch together in person or restaurants to have your date at as soon as this lockdown is over, is a great place to start.
Communicate Your Feelings—But Focus on the Good
It’s important to not be dragged down by the news or depressing updates circulating around the Internet. There’s nothing wrong with being aware, but if your conversations with your partner have focused on the not-so-good aspects of life with few breaks for lighter conversation, something needs to change.
There’s always something positive you can take out of any situation. Maybe the community lockdown gives you more time to read books, learn a new language, or start a blog about your cooking journey.
Give yourselves room to be open about your feelings, including your worries, but focus on the good things, including your plans together for the future.
Make an Effort to Surprise
Now may also be a good time to revisit the strategies of our ancestors. Sending gifts, ordering flowers, and handwriting letters may be considered ‘outdated’ by many people, but they still work today. In fact, they may work even better. Many of these gestures of romance require more effort than, say, just pressing ‘call’ to see each other’s faces and asking how the weather is.
Letters, for instance, are grossly underrated. They’re a wonderful way of fostering intimacy regardless if you’re living under one roof or oceans apart. Ordering art supplies and books for your partner are also romantic gestures that they’ll be sure to appreciate, especially if they’re having trouble filling their days with activities.
Go On a Virtual Date
Relationships tend to fizzle away if you don’t make an effort to rekindle the flames now and then. Fortunately, one activity that has taken a new shape with the advent of video calls is dating—virtual dating, to be exact.
A fancy dress-up dinner with a bottle of wine and some candles is still surprisingly romantic. You get to whip out your best clothes, show off your home-cooking skills, and at the same time, send your partner a message about how much you’re looking forward to making these virtual dates a reality when you meet.
Other fun ideas for a virtual date can include a virtual tour of museums or iconic places around the world, such as the Louvre in Paris or the pyramids of Ancient Egypt. There are dozens of these tours being made available to the public lately so don’t miss out on them.
Surviving a Long Distance Relationship Takes Work
Self-isolation can be very stressful for couples who are apart, but there are ways to make it work. Just remember to listen to your partner, make an effort to express your love, and do your best to create more special moments to carry with you during these trying times.