A lot of us have had to – or chosen to – move in with our loved ones for lockdown 3. This means that one, we aren’t lonely, and two, there is an unlimited supply of affection at our fingertips. But as much as we all love our partners, they can really get on your nerves too. There’s no shame in admitting it, and so here are some tips on living with your partner during lockdown.
1. Talk about things
If you are moving in with your partner for the first time during a lockdown, make sure you discuss it at length first. Living with your partner can be fantastic, but if you’re not ready for it, then it can also be the worst choice. Once you’ve moved in, you also need to talk about things that are important to you. If you have to have fresh towels on the radiator every morning, or your partner has a certain morning routine that they love – tell each other, and you can learn to work around each other!
2. Share chores
Anyone who has lived with anyone, whether its friends, parents, or partners, knows that one key to success is sharing the load. You can’t expect them to do the washing up, the laundry, the hoovering, the bins, etc., and not be a little bitter! Likewise, you can’t let them expect that of you. If you and your partner chat about and share the chores, it’ll be more fair, but it will also mean you can do the chores you like!
3. Don’t forget the romance
Living together, especially during a lockdown, does sometimes strip away some of the romantic elements of your relationship. But it won’t if you make a conscious effort to not let it! Arrange a day a week, or something like that, to have a date night. Or maybe if you go and get milk, bring back their favourite flowers or chocolate, or get a nice takeaway in. Date nights don’t have to stop just because you can’t go to the local pub!
4. Find new hobbies together
During the first lockdown, everyone made banana bread. It kept us sane. So search for something you and your partner can work on together. Maybe it’s baking, or painting, or a new video game! Working on something fun together and getting better at it, will provide a sense of accomplishment as well as a distraction.
5. Give each other space
If you’re living in a flat, or even worse, a studio, then having your own space may seem impossible. But if you make sure to communicate with your partner, you can give each other mental space. If you’re both studying or working from home, allocate yourselves separate workspaces in the house, and it’ll feel a little more normal. Nobody can spend 100% of their time with someone and not get a little overwhelmed.
6. Go outside
Similar to our last point, if you’re locked in a flat our house all day every day, whether that’s alone or with your partner, you’ll go mad! This is why you’re allowed to go and exercise with one person outside of your household, or with your household, in public. Why not plan a walk with your partner each day? Or if you know someone nearby, arrange a walk with them to give both you and your partner some time apart.
7. Manage your expectations
Don’t expect 100% romance and butterflies. Living with your partner is amazing, yes. It’s fantastic. But during a lockdown, everyone is a little frazzled, and that might dampen the romance and butterflies you would normally have. And that’s okay. If you set realistic expectations, you won’t be disappointed when you don’t get a bouquet of roses and a home-cooked dinner every single day.
8. Practice gratitude
Saying ‘thank you’ may seem like a moot point, but when you’re living with someone, it can be easy to forget everything they do for you. So just make sure you show gratitude every now and then. Thank them for washing up, thank them for bringing you a cuppa whilst you study – it is the little things that matter, at the end of the day.
9. Do a big sort out
When you first move in together, or if you already lived together, at the start of lockdown, do a big sort out. Clean your apartment and get rid of anything unwanted. Tidy room, tidy mind. You’ll stop any potential disputes about messiness, and make the place feel nice. That way you don’t mind spending all of your time there. Well, not as much anyway.
10. Make an effort
It’s easy in any relationship, to stop making an effort. But if you want to keep the romance alive, and you want to feel better about yourself, surprise your partner with the occasional effort. Put on your nicest clothes, do your hair and makeup, that sort of thing. You’ll feel better for it, and they’ll get to see you living your best life!
Generally, living with your partner during lockdown is a great thing. You get to grow closer and learn new skills together. Plus, unlimited cuddles.