So you are stuck in a small space with your significant other all day. They are your coworker, your therapist, your workout buddy and sometimes, be honest, the object of your wrath because you are human and you can only silently yell at yourself for so long.
Still, just because it’s hard and different and yes, the absolute worst, that doesn’t mean you have to let your romance die.
Here are 10 ideas for couples on lockdown who are hoping to stay together once the restrictions are lifted.
Surprise birthday party
So what if it isn’t your significant other’s birthday? Pretend it is! Make an occasion out of it. Bake a cake and order delivery, but don’t tell them what you are doing. Make a card and maybe a little gift and tell them to stay in the bedroom while you set everything up. When they come out, yell “Surprise!”
Just think, since it’s not their birthday, they will be even more surprised.
Spend a whole day in separate rooms, meet up in the evening
If you have more than one room, try your best to stay apart for the entire day. If you live in a studio apartment, pretend you can’t see each other. Text each other if you want to talk. At the end of the day, “come home” and meet up in the kitchen and remember how nice it used to be to have someone to talk to about your day who hadn’t experienced the whole thing right next to you.
“Love Is Blind” night
Pretend you are contestants on “Love Is Blind” by going into adjacent rooms, drinking wine, and asking each other personal questions through the wall.
Schedule a movie night with treats
Plan ahead and really go for it. Pay for a new movie you haven’t seen before on demand. Get some microwave popcorn going. Buy some M&M’s. When the time comes to start the movie, put your phones far out of reach and cuddle up.
OK, so this isn’t quite a date, but it’s a gift you can give your partner — clean the kitchen, make sure the laundry is folded and then take the kids and go for a drive, giving them an hour to just relax alone in silence.
Spend an entire evening together, playing board games and doing your best not to mention COVID-19. Come up with a punishment — if you mention the virus, do a pushup, until your arms are so tired you couldn’t possibly say it again.
Double date with friends over Zoom
Missing your friends? Plan a night where you hang out over Zoom or another video platform with another couple that you both actually like. Play some games or just pour yourselves a drink and talk to each other.
The chef and the bartender
Assign yourselves jobs — one person is the chef and one person is the bartender. The chef makes a special dinner while the bartender whips up a fancy cocktail. Next week, switch roles.
Weekly takeout night
Put it in your calendar — once a week, if you can afford it, try to get take or delivery and just relax. No fancy cooking, no baking, no dishes, just supporting the local economy and eating something you couldn’t make at home.
Make yourself a picnic and enjoy it together, in your yard, on your porch or even on the floor of your living room. Just a change of venue can make things new and less terrible.
— Lizzy Acker