It’s February and the spotlight swings in the direction of relationships and love with the arrival of Valentine’s Day. Maybe you’re single and find yourself wondering about what intimacy means in a COVID world. Is physical contact even allowed or possible? For many single people there’s been a long stretch of time in which physical touch has been pushed to the back of their minds- lockdown prohibiting even entertaining the idea. Are you asking yourself: when will you feel free to love freely again?
It’s all a bit of a challenge really when you hope that romance will follow its natural path and result in some form of intimate human contact. “Getting to know you has been wonderful, I’m feeling that spark, but if we kiss will we get sick?” We did a little of our own “market research” to discover something we had long suspected. There is definitely an intimacy recession in play right now.
If meeting in-person means sitting at opposite ends of a park bench or walking with coffees 6+ feet apart, is that enough? Perhaps it might take a little mind shift to give things a positive viewpoint and put some optimism into the equation. The current situation does have the natural effect of slowing things down, taking the pressure out of who makes the first move for instance. The pause button is only placing a temporary hold on being able to hold each other.
Can you stop, breathe, and lean into the idea of getting to know someone a little more? Conversation and online dates are an opportunity to really get to know someone. It creates lots of space to explore not just sharing your background stories, favourite things, but what’s actually important to you. This is the opportunity to expand the conversation and not be afraid to be vulnerable in sharing more about what you want and need.
You can inject some fun and positivity by exploring dating ideas together about what you can and want to do when mingling in public venues is possible again. Get the laptop into the kitchen and cook dinner together, make cocktails, or watch a movie. If you have been exclusive in an online space for some time, can you talk about how you could move forward with plans to isolate so that you can form a bubble to see each other?
If for now, we have to concentrate on the “getting to know you” aspect of romance, then just think how thrilling it will be when you feel the electricity of that first hand hold, the gentle kiss, or when the deep embrace happens- wow! Intimacy may be at a standstill, but romance is very much alive and well. If anything, absence makes the heart grow fonder, and believe me, so many of us cannot wait to be fond of intimacy again. You’re not alone. Check out some of our favourite success stories to see that it is possible to find love even in these challenging times!