More and more long-term relationships and marriages are dissolving following the lockdown
Translated by Thomas Ansell
The Coronavirus is putting a strain on lots of things in society, including interpersonal relationships, with more and more breaking down during the lockdown and subsequent re-opening. The trend has been noted by a number of ‘mediators’, counsellors, and lawyers. Working from home is starting to take its toll, and home life is seemingly becoming more and more difficult for those who have a partner and children all cooped up in the same house, says Bernadette Keijzer, a mediator from Heerenveen. As reported by the Omrop Fryslân.
“I’ve taken on more and more new clients in the last few weeks”, says Keijzer, “where it’s normally very quiet during the holiday season, I’ve seen a stream of people that want to separate from eachother coming in to my office.” Keijzer says that this is a direct result of the Coronavirus outbreak. “People normally come to me, or other mediators, after their holidays and after they have decided that they don’t want to go any further with their relationships. Thanks to the Coronavirus lockdown lots of people have brought this forward in time.”
The Coronavirus outbreak seems to be the straw that has broken the camel’s back in many circumstances. That’s fairly logical, says Keijzer: “people feel continuously on edge, children are suddenly stuck at home, and uncertainty around jobs, for example, makes for lots of stressful situations. It’s important to keep talking to eachother.” Above all, the issue seems to be that lots of people no longer have someone else to speak to about their problems or lives: “people have no outlet-valve, no sport, no pubs, no contact with colleagues; or really with anyone that you can pour your heart out to. Life is very different to before”, says Keijzer.
Van der Meij expects that the number of divorce applications will also rise in the autumn, and will be about 25% up on the yearly expected number at the moment: “across the country we usually see about 30,000 separations per year. I think that this year we can expect about 40,000. That’s quite a big rise.”