My partner and I are working from home. He was always a smart dresser, which I found hugely attractive. Now he’s a bit of a slob — he doesn’t bother getting dressed properly. I find it a turn-off.
This WFH lark has provided many of us with new, often unwanted insights into our partners’ lives. From their never-ending conference calls to their inability to put a cup in the dishwasher because they have “a really important Zoom meeting”, the past few weeks have become a test of even the strongest relationships. Unfortunately, your partner’s metamorphosis from well groomed to unkempt is par for the course too.
After years of tailored suits and ties, many men have an opportunity to let it all hang out, and it would be unrealistic to expect your partner to dress for the office when he is going no farther than the kitchen. Besides, feelings of uncertainty and insecurity can often make us reach out for our favourite and most comfortable items of clothing.
So it is important not to let something as trivial as the clothes your partner wears cause friction between you.
It’s worth noting too that, although things feel a bit chaotic now, if this situation continues for months, your partner will eventually realise that looking like a slob makes him feel like one as well, so he may spruce up of his own accord.
Having said this, you should both continue to make an effort with each other for the strength of your relationship and for your self-esteem, even if you’re just spending time at home.
Maybe instead of focusing on “slipping standards”, though, you should find a way to handle the situation creatively. Getting together for a posh dinner at home at the end of the week, for example, could be a chance to air all those evening dresses that have been lurking at the back of the wardrobe for years — and it’s also a perfect opportunity to remind each other of just how good you can both look when you make an effort.
Crucially, working in the same house doesn’t mean working in the same room. Even if one of you has to set up shop in the bathroom or the broom cupboard, putting as much physical distance between yourselves while you are in work mode will be good for both of you. Spending several hours a day away from each other is a key form of relationship preservation and, at the very least, it ensures you have something to talk about together at the end of the day.
Working from home has its challenges, but the one great advantage is that you can share your lunch break and, because there are no rules now, there is no reason why you can’t take it in bed. After a busy morning working, this could be a delightful way to de-stress and reconnect — and it’s good for your health too.
Research conducted in 2004 by the psychologists Carl Charnetski at Wilkes University and Francis Brennan at Philadelphia VA Medical Center found that people who have sex once or twice a week have increased levels of salivary immunoglobulin A (IgA), the antibody that is the first line of defence against infection in the mucosal membranes. The novelty of lunchtime sex also can also make it much more thrilling.
The main goal is to have some fun together and keep life at home interesting — because you’re unlikely to be going back to the office any time soon.
Send your queries to email@example.com