Some struggles of dating through the pandemic

By Anna Schmader
November 2, 2020

Hand holding. Photo by Anna.

It’s a no-brainer. The pandemic has had toxic effects on our daily lifestyles. For couples, it’s been especially difficult. Dating during this time has taken some deeper hardships than some had thought. 

Being separated and cooped in a house all the time will make most people go crazy. So being young and dating can be hard when couples don’t live together or live close to each other. That feeling of not being able to hug or kiss your significant other has its own effects. 

Alexia Gremlick with boyfriend Cam. Photo by Alexia.

“We didn’t go anywhere,” Alexia Gremlick, sophomore criminology major, said. With most places closed, it shortened the to-do list of activities. For Gremlick, there wasn’t a lot of progress and every day it was small, boring little conversations. It became more frustrating after knowing the routine of uncertainty to see each other.

For months, the stay-at-home orders forced couples not to leave their house unless it was an emergency, for medical reasons or for food shopping. By having this restraint on each other, it can feel that the relationship isn’t going anywhere. With nothing new to talk about, conversations becoming dull and date nights nowhere to be seen, interests may also fall apart. 

Brenna Walters with boyfriend Ryan. Photo by Brenna.

“Essentially it was house arrest,” Brenna Walters, junior marketing major, said. 

However, in some states, the orders were lifted earlier than others. For Walters, living in the state of Maryland, the stay-at-home orders were placed from March 30, 2020 to May 15, 2020. Having it a little luckier, being separated from her boyfriend, Ryan Finch, for only a month and a half still made the relationship difficult and trying. 

The orders were strict by informing communities if they left their house for anything other than emergencies, medical reasons or for food shopping, they’d get fined. By keeping themselves entertained, the two cooked for each other and ordered take-out when they finally reunited.

It’s been said that a relationship can work as long as both sides want it. Even if that means being torn apart for one to four months of quarantine. When it comes to year-long relationships, there are deep personal connections forming over time. More feelings, more emotions and more growth. However, this does not mean forever. 

Dating your significant other for over a year can have more negatives than positives, especially if it isn’t healthy. “If you have the opportunity to take an out, take it,” Lily Bonner, biology pre-med major, said. She advises anyone who is in troubled waters not to wait. 

For almost a full two years, Bonner was in a toxic place. Her self-awareness and perception of love was twisted by him. She struggled to find her way out of the relationship causing her to be stuck and frustrated.

Lily Bonner with ex-boyfriend.  Photo by Lily.

After being with her boyfriend for so long, the thought of being lonely was something Bonner didn’t want to think about. The thought of being alone and starting over was something that worried her. So she fought to keep the relationship alive.

For a year, she was controlled, belittled and stuck in a toxic place with no end in sight. Luckily, COVID-19 gave an easy way out with more separation. Finding the light at the end of the tunnel, she realized her mental health came first. Bonner finally ended the relationship.  

Being in a relationship has its ups and downs. The moments that are bittersweet and the others that tear people apart. 

“Be careful who you give your heart to, it’s expensive,” Bonner said. 


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Anna Schmader

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