Michigan life in the midst of this pandemic has changed the way we do almost everything, from shopping and socializing, to work and even parenting. However one thing that doesn’t seem to show up on most people’s lists of things that have changed, is marriage. That strikes us as odd, since your relationship is going to be affected by just about everything else in life. (As Mid Michigan’s top divorce attorneys, we’ve certainly seen a lot of struggling marriages here in the Lansing area since Covid19 shifted the way we all live life!)
Almost everything in life will affect your marriage in some way.
Marriages are impacted by finances, children, job stress, mental health issues, physical health conditions, and a host of other daily life concerns. So it would make sense that if your work situation has changed, your marriage would be affected. And for people who went from leaving home to go to their jobs, to working from home instead, it would seem that this shift in extra time spent at home would have an effect on your relationship. Especially if both you and your spouse are suddenly home together, all day, every day. So while there’s nothing wrong with hanging out at home in Charlotte or St. Johns, it can be rough on a marriage.
Working from home means seeing a LOT more of each other!
When a couple who is used to spending 40 hours apart from each other during the work week, suddenly finds themselves spending every minute in each other’s space, the shift in relationship dynamics can be challenging. Suddenly you can’t get away from one another. There’s no space, no breaks, and no time apart. That means you’re likely to get on each other’s nerves. So what can you do to avoid driving each other mad? Here are our top five tips to help couples in Howell, Brighton and Lansing survive the shift:
Ways to survive working at home with your spouse:
- If possible, work in separate spaces in your home. (For example, if you have the luxury of a home office, have one spouse use it while the other spouse works at the dining room table.)
- Consider scheduling your lunch breaks so that you don’t bump into each other in the kitchen in the middle of the work day. Taking your lunch breaks at different times will help you maintain that “work day” distance, if you need it.
- Don’t vent to your spouse about things that annoy you during the work day, and don’t take it out on them if you’re having a bad day because of work. They have their own work-related troubles to deal with during the day, and don’t need the added burden of your job frustrations.
- Be honest about your feelings if you’re getting on each other’s nerves, but make sure the focus of your conversation is problem solving. Don’t just complain. Chances are, they don’t like this any more than you do. So keep the focus on how to work through the problem, not just on how much the current situation annoys you.
- Find creative ways to work away from home. If the weather is nice, consider grabbing a coffee and working at a picnic table at a local park, using your wifi hotspot. If you have phone work to do, drive to somewhere with a view and sit in your car with the windows down. It may not be ideal, but even a few hours out of the house and away from your spouse can make the difference in saving your sanity.
Sometimes you just can’t make it work, despite your best efforts
Some marriages were on rocky terrain to begin with, and quarantine was the straw that broke the camel’s back. For some Ingham, Clinton and Eaton County couples, the time they spent apart at work was what kept them together. Now that they have no space in their relationship, they find their marriages are falling apart. If that sounds like your situation, and you’ve got questions about the divorce process in or around Lansing, call The Kronzek Firm at 517 886 1000. Our experienced family law attorneys can help you with every aspect of your divorce, from asset division and alimony, to child support and custody. We’ve been helping other Lansing area folks for more than 25 years, and we can help you too.