5 Emotional Boundaries To Consider When Dating During COVID-19

With the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, most of us are spending more time than ever in the comfort of our homes. As our daily routines have evolved drastically over the past few months, navigating the future as a couple may be a bit tricky. For example, you may have moved home with your family while your partner continues to share an apartment with roommates. With a whirlwind of change on the horizon for the time being, now is a great time for us to consider how our wants and needs in our romantic relationships may have recently shifted as well. As changes in our everyday routine accumulate, anxiety may also rise.

Here are five areas to consider your boundaries with your partner and help manage stress during the pandemic.

1. Work and school.

Although you might be working from home or taking classes online with minimal supervision, considering if your partner respects your designated work and/or school hours is critical. For example, are they understanding if you don’t reply to a text fast or immediately? If you are not working from home, do they understand if you need more space than usual when you get home or if you would prefer to shower before hugging them or sitting down for dinner?

2. Alone time.

As someone who deals with anxiety, through therapy and research, I’ve learned that taking moments for yourself and practicing mindfulness can be helpful ways to decompress and center your needs. However, with or without mental health issues, everyone can benefit from “me time.” A question to consider is: does your partner understand that although you may have more free time or spend more physical time with them, you still need your time for yourself? For example, taking a walk alone or asking for privacy during virtual therapy sessions. Or, do they get upset when you ask for space and dismiss your needs? Being able to honor each others’ needs as individuals is an important factor to consider as lines may start to blur during lockdown.

A banner promoting The Mighty's new Navigating Coronavirus Together group on The Mighty mobile app. The banner reads, Want to connect with others who are managing their health during the pandemic? Join Navigating Coronavirus Together now. Click to join.

3. Safety and COVID-19 precautions.

Everyone has different boundaries when it comes to COVID-19. In terms of interacting with loved ones, some people are currently not open to seeing extended family. As things have slowly started to open up, now is a great time to consider whether you and your partner are on the same page in terms of COVID-related precautions. For example, are you open to going to restaurants or the grocery store or would you prefer if you and your partner stick to no contact delivery services until further notice? Being clear about your expectations upfront can help you feel more at peace when making decisions about spending time with loved ones.

4. Stress and conflict resolution.

More arguments may arise as couples spend more time cooped up together amidst financial strains and rising uncertainty. Integrating more open communication with your partner can be a way to make issues get resolved and both your needs are made clear. For example, if you and your partner are now long-distance for the first time, having a conversation about how often would you both like to have virtual date nights and how comfortable are you with visiting each other in person? Attending therapy together or separately may be another way to strengthen your communication as a couple.

5. Intimacy and sex.

With anxiety and stress on the rise, changes in sex drive or being in the mood for intimacy may also occur. However, regardless of how much more time you and your partner are spending together during quarantine, no one should be pressuring you to sleep with them or send nude photos. If things get to a point where you or your partner feel unsatisfied, discussing your compatibility moving forward in an honest, respectful manner is a valid next step.

Figuring out your footing during a global pandemic can be quite stressful. Also, noticing the ways your relationship dynamics may shift can also add an additional layer of uncertainty to your plate. However, even during a pandemic, having your partner honor your needs and emotional well-being is critical. In the long-term, feeling empowered and heard helps us show up as our most authentic and honest selves, not only in our relationship but in all areas of life.

Struggling with anxiety due to COVID-19? Check out the following articles from our community:

Tags :

More blog posts