Couples Change — Often Hard to Adjust — But Often Possible.


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 There’s a good article in today’s New York Times discussing how all couples change. Here are a few of its observations that I believe are very helpful — especially during the current pandemic.

  • We don’t marry one person as much as we marry one version of a person, a snapshot of who we (and our partner) are individually and to one another at the moment when we say “I do.” Who we are five, 10 or 40 years later is anybody’s guess.
  • People change. As a result, relationships change, too.
  • Not only do relationships change with time, but people change, which can affect the relationship dynamics as well.
  • Personalities are more malleable than we may think. Most of us change, though often gradually.
  • But the pandemic and the disruption it brought have resulted in a period of far more rapid, intense and often negative change for many people the world over.
  • Communication has and will always be the key to mitigate negative feelings around change in your relationship,
  • Sometimes change is precisely what the love doctor ordered in order for two people to realize they are right for one another.
  • Accepting changes that you can live with not only leads to more self-fulfillment but can also lead to a stronger relationship. Change brings back some of that ‘newness’ and can add new passion and interest to the relationship. 

          “Watching a Partner Change is Hard.” New York Times (January 10, 2022).


Couples & the Pandemic — Many Thriving, Three Suggestions.

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     Many relationships have thrived during the pandemic, surprisingly.

     According to recent research 74% of married couples surveyed felt the pandemic strengthened their marriages, and 82% said it made them feel more committed.  Here are three recommendations from this recent research as discussed in the recent article “How Some Relationships Flourish in a Tough time.” (January 4, 2022):


  • Give Space — Perhaps unsurprisingly after nearly two years of being cooped up together, time apart is crucial to relationship health.


  • Assume Positive Intent — Often we’re quick to assume the worst about a situation or a person’s intentions, a tendency that has worsened as pandemic stress wears us down. Assuming a positive attitude can be very beneficial.


  • Make Time to Be Positive — Block out a specific time of day to be positive together, then stick with it no matter what.

     My initial observation is that the three above items do contribute to a better relationship between couples. Both emotionally and physically. Of course, other factors are also very relevant. But these three suggestions are a start.