Updated: Aug 25
Hey there. How’s your COVID-19 going? Yeah, same.
Mine is going as well as it can. I am currently unemployed (due to COVID-19) so I am spending my days writing, watching everything on Netflix, and catching up with friends. Some of my friends are single, living with roommates or back home with their parents, but some of my friends are with their partners during this time. I couldn’t help but wonder… How are the covid couples handling the pandemic? And, is it better to be with a significant other during this crisis- or without?
When I say covid couples, I mean the couples who started dating right when the pandemic hit. Sure, there are plenty of partnerships who’ve been together long before the pandemic, but I’m not too worried about them. I’m more concerned with the relationships who just began to bloom in February/March and are now in quarantine together.
My dad and his new girlfriend are one example. My dad has been living alone for several years and for the first few, I could tell all that time alone was hard for him. However, in the last couple years, I’ve seen him actually enjoy his space to himself. However, COVID-19 happened and his girlfriend lost her job. She moved in with him -and they're doing great! I think he needed to achieve peace within himself in order to move on and bring a new woman into his life. Plus, I hear she’s a terrific cook, so my dad is living in quarantine bliss. So, that’s one covid couple I’m not worried about.
To give you an insight into my little quarantine corner. I am not currently dating anyone. I haven’t been on a date in… let’s just say, it’s been a while. When this pandemic started, I thought ‘I would be so much better off if I were in a relationship right now.’ I was wrong. I mean, if there was a way to pull a Cher and turn back time, I could saddle myself up with somebody just to see how well I’d do. I just don’t think it would be a good idea for me right now. Along with everybody else on this planet, my anxiety has spiked since March. Some things which normally wouldn’t bother me at all, ramp up my anxiety like I’m hanging on a cliff. Just finding the right time to do laundry and not run into anybody is a task. Moreover, only a week in, I had harmful thoughts about myself (refer to previous blog post). I would not want a partner to be quarantined with me while I’m in this anxious state. The thought of being quarantined with a romantic partner actually gives me more anxiety.
I am quarantining with my roommate, though, and she is delightful. We are cohabitating very easily in the sense that when we need alone time, we allow each other that space. When we need to be around another person, we hang in the common areas. Even if we’re each on our laptops with our earbuds in, it’s just nice to be in the presence of another person. I feel awful for my mom, in that respect. She lives alone (almost 400 miles from me) and that normally suits her fine. She’s a lone wolf of sorts. But during this time, she’s confided that she’s actually quite lonely. We are very much alike in the sense that we gain energy from being alone. Although, since she is the more extroverted one, clubbing on a Saturday night is normal for her. We make sure to facetime and call as often as we can – to feel normal.
That’s the thing, isn’t it? Feeling normal? We have all said it at least once- I just want to feel normal again. I want this to feel normal. I want to be normal. If one can reach a level of normalcy in all this madness – with or without a partner, then that’s the key. I feel normal being single. I’ve been single for 3 years. I grew up single (only child). Being single is a state of normal for me. Some people need a romantic partner to feel normal. In the end, we’re going through a pandemic and our most basic need to feel like normal people must be met. If all you can do just to get through the day is eat and sleep – that’s all you need to do. The world is in chaos and we just need to get through it, no matter the how.
Suppose those who come out the other side of this are still in couplings, it could be said their relationship can withstand anything. And those who don’t, well, perhaps they are better off going through a pandemic alone – or alone for now. One thing can be said of all of us- we’re learning what we need individually to get through a pandemic. Whether that’s a person, a cat, a roommate, or just a laptop to write out all of our feelings- that’s all we need to focus on.