As if married life wasn’t hard enough already (separate toothpaste tubes since your partner doesn’t squeeze it right, anyone?), the infamous year 2020 ran it through the ultimate test. No wonder there’s been a 34% rise in sales of divorce agreements between newlyweds in the last five months in the US.
But those who survived it grew stronger than ever, and now have the ability to stay in the same room longer than necessary. Most importantly, though, husbands, wives, and partners, they all contributed to a huge public service. You see, their quarantine experiences served as one-of-a-kind material for hysterically funny marriage tweets along the way.
Just think of it... minimum external leisure activities, no home time off, aka I’m busy at work, and disproportionately more of the all-time favorite quality family time, which will probably never be viewed the same again after the pandemic is over. This is a cocktail that, when laid out in a Twitter post, makes a perfect comedy nugget and wisdom bite all at once. So let’s see what ‘twenty twenty (w)one’ had in it for us to laugh at.
To find out more about the toll the pandemic-induced chaos has had on our marriage lives, Bored Panda reached out to Dr. Lise Deguire, a clinical psychologist and author of “Flashback Girl: Lessons on Resilience From a Burn Survivor.”
Lise told us that because of the quarantine, our daily routines changed beyond recognition. “Most of us have stayed home full-time for many months. Usually, we get our social needs met by lots of people and not just our spouse. Normally, married people are able to go out and connect with friends, family, and coworkers.”
The pandemic has put an end to that, which means that “we have had to rely on our spouses for almost all of our companionship needs.” Lise further explained that for some couples, particularly the ones who were already unhappy, “this time has been extremely tiring.”
On the other hand, some good came out of the cursed year. Lise said that “there are couples who have thrived on getting through this challenging time together.” “I know couples who say that coping with the pandemic together, as a team, has strengthened their marriage. Sometimes adversity does have an upside,” she concluded.
Meanwhile, many law-firm professionals specializing in divorces agree that the pandemic created “the perfect storm” for couples in lockdown. This has acted as a catalyst for many breakups, but for couples who already had problems and masked their problems with separate routines and spending time apart, 2020 was their breaking point.
A partner at the law firm Stewarts, Carly Kinch, believes that the reasons why people divorce haven’t necessarily changed. “You've always had the underlying current of ‘I'm unhappy with this or that at home.’ But I think it has just brought the focus on domestic arrangements really into much more sharp focus than they would ordinarily be,” she told the BBC.
But what’s been indeed a change was the significant increase in women who are initiating divorces. Turns out, 76% of new cases came from female clients, which makes it 16% higher when compared to the same time a year ago. Carly believes it may have to do with a “disproportionate share of housework and childcare that falls on females” in heterosexual households.
Carly described the newly set household dynamics of 2020 that were very different from what many partners expected when the lockdowns started: “‘Oh, isn't this going to be lovely! We're going to spend lots of quality time together. And my partner, who's normally in the city or commuting—they'll be around and they'll help more. And I think the reality for many has been a far cry from that.”
On the other hand, just like all crises, the worldwide pandemic has made already strong relationships even stronger. Many partners benefited from more quality time spent together, many initiated new hobbies and found common things to engage in together.
If the year 2020 has taught us something, it must be an appreciation of our closest ones and having an opportunity to start 2021 together. Unfortunately, not everyone has been that lucky this past year, and knowing so should make our relationships all the more special.
Note: this post originally had 150 images. It’s been shortened to the top 50 images based on user votes.