How to ensure your relationship lasts the lockdown
How’s isolation treating you all? Have you lost your minds yet?
So far, I have learned that I can fit 4 Oreos in my mouth, I have binge-watched all nine seasons of SUITS (hello Harvey Specter, am I right?) I have found it very hard to maintain my training at the same intensity before all our gyms closed down so we have had to get very creative to keep fit. I miss playing touch footy, I miss our gym and my teammates beating up on each other, I miss getting dressed up and going out to dinner with the girls… I simply miss having my freedom and independence. What has been the biggest eye-opener, however, is that there are so many little things that I used to take for granted. Once we’re all allowed to be out and about with each other again, I think the thing I’ll look forward to most is just having a drink and a chat with my friends. You’ll find us at the beer garden every day for the first month of freedom – no doubt!
This is why we’re here to do a special COVID-19 Lockdown edition on Noir et Blanc. As someone who spends a lot of time researching the psychology behind sex and relationships, something I have found very interesting is the number of Social Media posts about people dreading having to spend so much time at home with their partner. Now, obviously, most would have meant for this to be a bit of a joke, but as the old saying goes “Many a truth said in jest.” *suggestive wink* I want to keep this post light and fun, so let’s not get too deep, just hit some of the ways we can all be a better QuaranTEAMate. OMG. See what I just did? Shit, I’m so clever 😉
Before we get started, are you dating someone you actually like?
Sara: This sounds obvious I know, but now is a good time for you to figure out if you can actually stand the person you’re in a relationship with. Spending time with them shouldn’t be such a chore!
McKenzee: *laughs* If you’re already living with someone and you’re just now coming to the realisation that they drive batshit crazy, you need to re-evaluate why you took that step! You should know the person you’re dating well enough by now and what you sign up for before moving in with them.
Sara: I don’t think there’s any doubt our partner will drive us nuts from time to time, but when you’re irritated by the smallest things, every day… something isn’t right. I think people forget a relationship isn’t supposed to be so hard all the time. That’s your teammate. You chose this person to do life with – they should be a rockstar in your eyes.
Now that we’ve established you actually like the person you’re with and are moving forward, here’s a few things we’ve come up with to keep things fresh while spending more time with them than normal.
SEX *fire emoji*
McKenzee: I think now is a great time to get spicy. Try introducing something a little extra for pleasure! Explore new positions, fantasies – please, no injuries! Ropes, blindfolds or even order some new lingerie. If the sex life is lacking, you now have absolutely no excuse. Get in the bedroom… or on the kitchen floor.
Sara: That’s right. The *time* issue has been extinguished. Nobody is getting home after a 10 hour workday like “I’m too tired.” I think it’s important to take note that given how much time you have to be home and with your partner now, how often are you “not feeling it?” If it’s almost every day, refer to the above: Do you even like them? Are you with them because it’s comfortable or is there still that lust and sexual attraction there? As somebody who is in a brand new relationship, we’re having sex allllll the time. (No, as a huge shock to you all I am sure, this man is not Franks. Don’t worry, I’ll write more about Pup in another post.) I understand we’re in that ‘new phase’ and that constant, ‘have to have you’ sexual chemistry comes very easily. So if you have been with your partner for a long time, really consider re-visiting some of the things that made you crazy about each other in the first place. Get your hands on each other, get naked and get re-acquainted with each other’s bodies. Take your time, make them tick, have a giggle and use this time to get hot and sweaty in the sheets. Fall in love over and over again… alllll nightttt loonnggggg.
Get creative and have some fun!
Sara: I for one have already established loud and clear that I am the beer pong champion and my sick, twisted sense of humour makes me the superior Cards Against Humanity player. Not that I’m competitive or anything…
McKenzee: Even making the little things fun. Cleaning the house can be fun! Put some music on and just get flirty with each other. It’s not so much about what you’re actually doing together, but more about your attitude towards each other. Work out together and encourage each other, find a series you both like and can enjoy together, cook together – pour a glass of wine and just enjoy taking things slow again. Little dance and a dip in the kitchen? Melt.
Sara: Absolutely. Open a bottle of gin, turn the lights off, sit on the floor and listen to your favourite songs. If that isn’t really your thing, get a little bit baked… just a teeny bit… and watch a stand-up comedy on Netflix. We watched Chris D’Elia whilst high and I’ve never laughed harder in my life!
McKenzee: Who the fuck drinks gin? Actually, this is the time to pull out some wicked pranks on each other. You have all the time in the world to really pull something epic together and make him laugh.
Sara: Amazon is your friend… order the props. Go big or go home.
McKenzee: TIK TOK
Sara: Omg Yes. I don’t care what anyone says, no one is too cool for Tik Tok.
Address the big things & let go of the little things:
Sara: If we’re serious about using this Lockdown to our advantage and getting our relationships in the best shape, that means communicating well too. If something has been on your mind and there never has really been a good time to sit down and hash it out, now’s your chance. Whatever it is, as long as he knows you’re not attacking him, you’re just wanting to get something off your chest, you have all the time in the world to have a hard conversation. You may even realise it’s not as bad as you had built up in your head. In most cases, it will be something he’s been wanting to discuss too.
McKenzee: Pick your battles though. If you want to bring up something heavy, don’t also go off at him about something lame like being on his Playstation. You’re spending a lot of time together, all day and all night and you will be irritated. But you’re not perfect either. If he doesn’t moan about little things you do, then just make the promise to each other that you’ll only argue about things that matter.
Sara: Yes. I once said in the middle of an argument “I am not fighting against you, I am fighting for us” and it is something that has echoed in my brain ever since. You’re not moaning if what you’re discussing is going to wind up with the two of you in a better place.
Sara: All the things you’ve always wanted to do, but never got around to putting the wheels in motion? Make those plans now and make them together. Something that each of you want to do individually and something that you want to do together. Plan that trip overseas. Start designing that renovation you’ve been thinking about. Pick projects or goals that you can work on together that you can get excited about and look forward to.
McKenzee: Planning a trip together would be so fun! Getting excited about all the places you want to see around the world and memories you can make with each other. Travelling with a partner will test your relationship but its also something that will bond you even tighter together and those memories you’ll make? Unforgettable.
Sara: Never before has there been a time where we have been forced to stay home and be around the people we love this much. We may never again. As trying as these times are and as anxious and as uncertain as you may feel, try to look at it as a bit of a blessing. You have been given the perfect opportunity to just stay home and be present in your life. To really reflect and be thankful for the small things. Slow everything right down. Take each day as it comes and really be in it, loving on each other as much as you can. Kiss slowly, touch each other more – there’s no rush. Life isn’t busy anymore and you’ve got absolutely nowhere to be but right there with each other. That is a gift. Enjoy that. Enjoy each other. Love each other. Be flirty, be sweet, be sexy, have some fun and just embrace being happy in your little quarantine bubble with that man you chose. Remember why you chose him.
Sara: There has never been a more perfect time to sign up to Hinge or Tinder. No one can go anywhere or do anything so the pressure is off! I guess Chad’s just going to have to be charming and interesting and have a genuine conversation with you. Welcome to courtship boys, you have to actually get to know each other now. Times are a-changing! In all seriousness though, as lonely as isolation can be, enjoy this time alone to focus on you. Think about your plans and your goals and what you can sink your teeth into once this is all over. Use all this extra time to get a little further ahead and in the meantime, check on your friends and family and connect in the important relationships you do have.