A: My partner and I are struggling to find time alone together. We have two teens who never leave the house. No overnights at their friend’s houses, no parties past curfew, no 9 weeks of summer camp in the Catskills. Meanwhile we can’t go to the movies or restaurants. Valentines’ s Day? Yeah, right; lol.  We’ve been around each other 24/7 since the pandemic began and we are starting to grow apart. I fear we’ve lost our spark. I am not sure what to do or how to rebuild our connection. 

A: We’re sorry to hear about this. Many couples are experiencing a similar disconnection due to the pandemic. This quarantine won’t last forever, but in the meantime planning and carrying out dates can be difficult, especially when you have kids who can’t leave the house. Here are some suggestions to rekindle your relationship:

  1. Be intentional in taking time away from your make-shift workspaces and familial duties, to be playful with each other or cuddle on the couch for a movie night. Start small and work back up towards your healthy relationship.
  2. Consider subscribing to a Happily personalized monthly date night box.
  3. Angela Voegele, a Certified Gottman Couples Therapist, recommends utilizing Gottman Card Decks. She says they “help couples to have interesting conversations;” offer fun and helpful prompts, id
    eas, and questions that aid in improving your communication and connection. This virtual deck of cards is FREE and can be found in your App Store. 
  4. Remember to be kind and patient with each other and to encourage your partner’s bids for connection with an encouraging response. You’ve got this!

Originally posted in The Lakelands Leader in February 2021.