Rachel Sussman is on CBS radio talking about Covid’s toll on romantic relationships
I was recently on CBS radio discussing Covid’s toll on relationships. This seems to be a topic worth discussing these days.
The pandemic has put relationships under significant pressure as couples struggle to navigate financial hardships, lack of privacy, stress over medical concerns, and family and professional worries.
I work with busy couples all over the country (virtually these days) and I regularly hear their concerns. Many are struggling – especially ones with small children. Typically a couple will be trying to do their own jobs (often from home via Zoom) while simultaneously attempting to coach or assist their children with virtual schooling. This scenario takes much adapting, pivoting and multitasking.
Though the pandemic is clearly stressing couples, there are ways to address problems.
I suggest that couples try to discuss their feelings with each other instead of bottling them up and having arguments. Try to schedule weekly conversations and really check in with each other. Couples can discuss what their expectations are of each other and address areas in which they may be letting each other down. It’s also important to identify areas in which each person is doing a good job and celebrate that. It’s also a good idea to validate each other’s experience and be sure everyone feels heard and understood.
What to do when your relationship feels stressful?
- Be mindful of emotions instead of bottling them up.
- Have gentle conversations at appropriate times with your partner.
- Reduce expectations and remember that everyone is stressed and worried right now.
- Seek couples therapy or counseling.
RACHEL A. SUSSMAN, LCSW, is a licensed psychotherapist, relationship expert, writer and lecturer. She is the founder of Sussman Counseling, a psychotherapy practice based in New York City, specializing in treating couples and individuals with relationship dilemmas. She is the author of THE BREAKUP BIBLE: The Smart Woman’s Guide to Healing from a Breakup or Divorce (Random House).