Across the world the coronvirus pandemic is radically altering approaches to love, dating, sex and marriage. Being thrown together for an unprecedented period is like Christmas without the joy and putting a big strain on one’s relationship.
The coronavirus outbreak is very likely to lead to a rise in divorce rates because couples are being forced together with social distancing and therefore spending more time together at home with no escape.
As a nation we are facing weeks and maybe even months of being in social isolation with our spouse and children. This is not an easy time for any of us as we face the biggest health challenge in our life time.
Usually our peak times of ‘togetherness’ are Christmas and the summer holidays but at a stretch it is normally for only two weeks. We are now facing endless days of being cooped up together with no outside influences, distractions or anywhere to go. Not even popping out for a coffee, to the shops or to see friends. People are beginning to feel stressed, anxious and claustrophobic in their own homes and the strain shows by couples getting into heated arguments over something petty. We are all beginning to feel trapped with no foreseeable escape.
Depending on where you are in your relationship this enforced confinement can be a good or bad experience. In the early stages of one’s relationship spending time together is beneficial and could protect lovers against a divorce. Where as other couples who have been together for over five years the strain will begin to show, particularly if one of the spouses has been considering divorce for a while but waiting for the right time to do it…..
As we all know during January the number of people separating spikes after the Christmas period of intense proximity pushes couples into divorcing. This and the summer holidays are the only times when one spends concentrated time together. This is the most common grounds for divorce and cited in the UK as ‘unreasonable behaviour’. The other main cause of divorce are cases where infidelity is involved.
We mustn’t forget the additional financial stress associated with the current confinement; job losses, reduced pay, meeting mortgage payments or rent and mounting bills but mainly the uncertainty of what the future holds are adding a considerable strain to a marriage which may already be showing cracks.
In China the divorce rates have dramatically risen since the coronavirus breakout and already 300 couples have scheduled appointments to get a divorce.
With the continued confinement, lack of social interaction and financial insecurities here in the UK we are likely to see a sharp rise in divorces too over the coming months.