Watching videos on a laptop.

How COVID-19, Social Distancing May Affect Intimate Relationships

Even in times of Corona Virus quarantines, people are still having sex. Sales of condoms are rising in some countries. As humans, we long for connection and being intimate is a way to get a sense of security and comfort in difficult times. 

But what if the home isolation measures take a toll on your love and bedroom life? When single, your chances of meeting someone new drop dramatically. If you’re at home with your partner, sexual problems such as ED may become more visible. And how do you deal with long-distance relationships in the face of travel disruptions?

How social distancing impacts dating

These are tough times if you are looking for love or sex (or both). While dating apps still work, users will see warnings about the risk of contracting the virus when seeing new people

Meeting someone over coffee is out of the question in many parts of the world right now. Whole cities are under quarantine and the World Health Organization (WHO) advises us to keep at least three feet distance from each other. Restaurants and cafes are closing. If you’re single and living alone you may feel increasingly lonely and anxious.

Don’t isolate yourself from the world because you can’t go out! Now is the time to use modern technology and stay connected. Exercise long conversations with interesting people you meet online.

If you miss sex, a virtual erotic session on the phone or chat can give you a bit of satisfaction. And if you choose to meet that person face to face after the lockdowns are over… it’s going to be sooooo exciting!

Remember that sexting can put your privacy at risk

Remember that sexting can put your privacy at risk

Corona Virus, travel bans and long-distance relationships

What about the people who have found each other but live far, far away? Travel restrictions are a global reality. Looming airline bankruptcies suggest international travel may be difficult for months to come.

Realizing you will not see your significant other for a long time can cause anxiety. You probably worry about his or her health. If you’re not used to phone or online sex, this may become a challenge too.

A good idea is to have regular date nights… online. This way you can switch from discussing the COVID-19 situation to focusing on your partner. Dress up a little bit, prepare something nice to eat and have a lovely conversation … via Skype or FaceTime.

Use caution when navigating the long-distance sex dilemmas. Have honest conversations about it, experiment and see where your limits are. Now is a good time to get creative and share those hot fantasies.

Home isolation can aggravate relationship and sexual problems

While some couples are excited at the thought of having more free time and being able to organize sex marathons (with a bit of Netflix in between), others dread quarantines and home isolation. There are two potential problems here:

  • The necessity to stay under one roof 24/7 may become overwhelming. You may start to argue and miss personal space.
  • Or, isolation may deepen the existing conflicts between you. Things that were not mentioned before (like ED) may be noticed.

Couples therapist Alexandra H. Salomon, explains that pandemic reveals our different coping styles. Some of us panic, some try to ignore the risk altogether. This can be fuel for arguments and conflicts. While on a regular day, you could leave the house to take a walk and calm your emotions, in quarantine you are forced to stay under one roof.

If you feel you’ve had enough and need a pause from your partner, say it. Separate – even if it means spending a day in opposite corners of your tiny studio. Once you’ve cooled down, talk about it.

Staying together 24/7 may aggravate relationship problems

Staying together 24/7 may aggravate relationship problems

But try doing it in a different way. Instead of picking apart all the “you should haves” and “you always”, explain how you felt about the situation. What moved you so deeply that you got mad? Looking at emotions instead of only facts can help you understand your partner better and increase intimacy.

This strategy works also if sexual problems, such as ED become the center of attention. Looking for solutions together and expressing your feelings along the way will help you return to satisfying sex life.

Getting in-person medical advice for your problems can be tricky these days so remember you can order ED medication and have an online consultation with a licensed physician to make sure you are getting the right and safe treatment. Click here to see the list of available treatments.

Anka Grzywacz is a sexologist, reproductive health expert and Certified Sex Coach™. In her online practice she helps busy parents solve their intimate problems.