In your urgency to score a lockdown sex partner you may have just settled for less than best.
Covid has put a damper on the logistics of dating to the point where people are barely even attempting it. So it would make sense that the majority of lovemaking couples have probably just shacked up for the sake of boning, give or take some actual romance or interest with each other.
Given the limited options in the dating bubble and the close to no opportunities for physical interaction, it could be that you’ve landed a dud of an intimate partner just for the sake of it. Now that we’re stuck, you may not realise just how chat they are.
Maybe you see no qualms in giving yourself to a no-match partner, you’re getting your nut and that’s something that most people can’t achieve, right? Win!
Maybe your ex came out of the woodwork right before lockdown 2.0? Maybe the couple of dates you had with a new suitor allowed you to fasten the process of getting to bed? Perhaps you just stayed in your expired relationship out of the fear of losing intimacy?
The intimate partner hack has been a get-out-of-jail-free card for many Melburnians stuck in the confinement of isolation, but there is a crippling risk to this union or civil agreement, and I don’t mean a fine. I’m talking about being stuck with a dud.
In your urgency to score a sex partner, you may have just settled for less than best. You’ve committed to sex with this person for the foreseeable future – or at least until we’re free.
Ruby is a 22-year-old PR gal and personal trainer. She’s got her shit together, hustling her way through iso 2.0. Prior to the first or second wave, she’d been seeing someone since November 2019. They considered their relationship casual by the time the world started ending earlier this year. They’re clearly, intimate partners.
In and out of lockdown the two have navigated a convincingly mutual relationship, up until now. It’s almost been a year since they started seeing each other and Ruby is antsy by the lack of verbal commitment. Homeboy is using the pandemic to shy away from talking about how he sees their relationship, he doesn’t know what’s to come or where he sees himself after all of this. She’s also flagged that he has major commitment issues in general (eep).
To put it plainly, she’s got herself a dud and she knows it. Most people can clearly identify this as dog behaviour and would do something about it but, considering the circumstances, this would mean… no more intimate partner.
So, she’s settling for now.
But what can settling for a bad egg mean for your current and post-lockdown experience, e.g. life itself? “It can really make you feel like shit, you’re constantly worrying about whether or not this person likes you, it’s a breeding ground for anxiety,” says Steph, a 23-year-old social media guru. She was seeing someone during the first lockdown, ultimately it ended, but she’s still holding onto the emotional baggage of the relationship.
“I just didn’t feel myself, or how I would feel with a partner in the real world, it kind of felt like we were in a time warp and just wouldn’t admit that things weren’t going well.”
For most entering or continuing relationships this year, it’s felt like borrowed time. Life is on hold, this is just a blip in the road. But if you haven’t noticed, it’s almost been an entire year. This is literally a part of your life and what happens now will impact you later.
As someone who has experienced a COVID-relationship myself, it’s indeed a real thing. You act as if the world stops or that real-life relationship rules and complications don’t apply.
My bloke decided to jet off to NSW at the first opportunity he saw, three weeks into freedom and I was just a part of his COVID haze – literally his comforter for the period in which his wings had been clipped.
What we may need to assess is whether or not these relationships would hold up in ‘the real world’. I know that if there had been any sign of old mate moving interstate and we were dating in a COVID-free world, I would have seen that red flag from miles away and bolted – but borders were closed and my legs were open.
Ruby, our PR gal currently stuck with the dud, admits that she doesn’t know what’s going to happen to her relationship when the restrictions are lifted, but she’s expecting some tough conversations and, inevitably, disappointment.
While you may be enveloped in the arms of a lover right now, someone who’s comforting your emotional and/or physical needs in lockdown, just be weary of slipping into an illegitimate reality. Whatever you do or experience now will have impressions on you because it is real. If you’re running away from a relationship conversation, you might just be stretching out the inevitable.
At the end of the day, COVID stops for no one, it doesn’t mean you have to.