For those struggling in their relationships right now during the COVID-19 pandemic, WGN spoke with a family therapist who offered some advice.
“It is such a strange time for couples when they are isolated from all of their support systems except each other,” said family therapist Dr. Lisa Gordon “So I think what’s happening is they are looking to each other to fulfill all of their needs for them to be playmates and comforters and household help.”
Gordon said it’s an unrealistic expectation even in unprecedented times.
“There isn’t a lot of other energy coming in, so partners are looking to each other and I think it’s helpful to have that understanding,” Gordan said. “In no other time would you expect your partner to be those other roles, it’s just now, without fulfilling activities and support that is a pressure that’s going on.”
She said to manage your expectations with your partner and look for the positives.
“So you may be looking at your partner, ‘how is he falling short? What is she doing that’s so irksome?’ said Gordon. “Instead, change the focus to what’s going right? how are they pulling their weight? what are they doing that is supportive so really trying to find those pockets of goodness and kindness and generosity each day and look for them.”
Of course she said, communication is key.
“I think the couples who are struggling are maybe the couples who aren’t so great at communicating and conveying care and love and support,” Gordon said.