Connection in Marriage During a Pandemic

Continuing to talk about the impact of the pandemic on relationships, Dr. Dan Allender and Rachael Clinton Chen invite Dr. Steve Call into a conversation about the impact of COVID-19 on marriage. We do not approach this topic lightly—we know there is much heartache and brokenness in many homes. Marriage itself is full of complexity and possibility. We hope you hear encouragement, vulnerability, and playfulness as Steve invites us to hear how tension and conflict are created, how increased exposure can lead to shame, and the beauty couples can offer one another when they remind each other what is true. 

Steve notes in his own marriage there have been good moments of reconnection and moments that have not gone as well during quarantine. In this season of togetherness, couples may encounter parts of one another they may not have known otherwise, which can lead to either goodness and intimacy or tension and disruption. Many are afraid of revealing the hidden parts of themselves to avoid judgment from not only a spouse but also themselves. 

“Of course the powerlessness we feel heightens and drives anxiety because that is a natural human response when something is taken from us. In the midst of this moment, this is where the gift of what we’re experiencing is, for one another in our marriage, to be the image of God in the midst of what is creating so much distress and worry. We’re invited to move toward one another, to remind one another of what is true, but also be the comfort of presence without words. There is potentially something really beautiful about what our spouse can offer.” Dr. Steve Call

“How do I let someone move towards me in the place where I feel the most unworthy of love?” Rachael Clinton Chen 

“Exposure always leads to a revelation of shame, and if there is no language to engage shame […] you can pile it up at the level of ‘What did you expect, this is a crazy moment,’ rather than, ‘Can we language on behalf of ourselves and our spouse that so much is going on that we’ve got to allow ourselves to step into that vulnerable conversation about loss, fear, and shame?’” Dr. Dan Allender

“I think parts of our own stories are revealed in this time that might not have been revealed before. Who are you in this crisis I might not have known otherwise? What if we dare to believe this is a time that draws us towards one another rather than away from one another?” Dr. Steve Call