In our series The Debate, our community of real moms tackle the pros and cons around common parenting choices. The truth is, like so many decisions around child rearing, there is no right or wrong answer. At HATCH, our job is to give voice to both sides of any debate, peppering real mom wisdom with the necessary facts so that you can make the best decision for you and your family.
Ahhhhh QUARANTINE. It’s been a DOOZY. And nowhere more than in our relationships have the effects of 24/7 living/working/parenting been felt. Some of us can say for certain that the effects of life during Covid-19 has made our relationships stronger. That this test of true partnership has resulted in an unyielding love and support system that’s only been fortified during the crisis. While some of us want to knock the living daylights out of our significant other. And guess what? It’s all good either way. Some of us, as much as we love our partners, simply aren’t meant to be with them all day everyday. And that’s OK. Here, we spoke with two moms on how their relationships have been made stronger – and weaker – during Covid-19. Just remember, however you’re feeling about your plus one, you aren’t alone.
What Doesn’t Kill Us Makes Us Stronger….
“Well, outside of the obvious that Covid-19 and life in quarantine with two full time working parents has totally sucked. At first, my husband and I really didn’t know what was up or down when it came to raising the kids, getting our schedules down (I still don’t think we ever made a schedule) and taking the time to enjoy each other. There were fights in the beginning. Who’s making lunch while on a conference call? Who is taking them out in the yard to play and making sure our son gets on Zoom while trying to meet a deadline? It was all awful.
But, when I do think back on the last six months or so, one thing that has come of life in quarantine, is a deep fundamental knowledge that my husband and my relationship is totally secure. It has never been put to the test like this before, and we had each other’s back, we supported each other, and we knew that even in the roughest days, we had it together as a unit. That was the only way we were able to survive. The space that he gave me, the way he filled in the blanks while I was working, the patience he showed our kids – I had never seen that side of him before. In non-Covid times, our kids are out of the house all day. My son was in pre-k and my daughter was in daycare, so neither of us had ever had to parent constantly. We had never been put to this test. You get to see a totally different side of your spouse during a pandemic, and now that our area has loosened up restrictions a bit, and our lives have start showing some semblance of normalcy, I love him more than ever.”
Get Me Out of this Relationship
Reza, 20 months
“Let me just say that I love my husband. Love him, love him, love him. No one else can make me laugh like him. We’ve been together for almost 10 years and I love him now as much as I loved him then. But life in quarantine with a two-year-old didn’t exactly make our relationship stronger. Not on any level. We fought constantly, and it totally sucked.
I think our main pain points were just the division of labor and the idea that being around each other constantly only fueled arguments that would otherwise have never happened. For example, our son’s nap schedule. Usually our son naps from 1-3 pm, which our babysitter does or I do on the days I’m with him. But in quarantine, we didn’t have childcare, and it was on me to put him down everyday (which is kind of a whole thing). And for some weird reason, my husband never even knew how it all worked since I guess he never fully ingrained himself in these everyday moments of life with an almost two-year-old (even though we’re together on weekends). He was able to retreat to an office everyday. But in quarantine, he was staring down at a totally new schedule, where part of that was taking an active part in raising a kid. That was something he simply didn’t want to deal with and that became increasingly clear as the days wore on. Did that bum me out? Yes. Do I love him less for it? No.
Some of us are blessed with partners who can manage it all and have the patience to multitask. Some of us have partners who are a bit more tunnel-visioned when it comes to the responsibilities of working full time and managing a child. I don’t fault my husband for our arguments. These have been extreme circumstances that are totally unnatural and should never ever be a reality. So yeah, my relationship was significantly weaker during quarantine, but I just think that’s to be expected. Hopefully, when and if life resumes or goes back to some version of normal, we can go back to how we function best as a couple and family.”