Relationships are hard work, even in the best of times. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic and its halt to all things normal, your love life might feel strained — especially if you’re sheltering with a partner. It’s a shock to the usual routine: Suddenly your partner is there beside you, at all hours, every day.

If you and your partner are experiencing more tension or more fights because of this, know that this makes sense. Life has changed — and so has your relationship.

In typical times, many relationship tips involve coming together, being vulnerable, and spending quality time as a couple. That’s on its head now. We’re all vulnerable, and many couples are spending more time together than ever.

“That’s a fight I’ve already heard from people: ‘I just want some time!’” says Dirty Lola, a New York-based sex educator. “You’re not going to want to spend time together. The best way to bond is to make sure you’re giving space.”

Dirty Lola offers more tips for staying connected — by reframing your connection — in this time of COVID.

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