Should couples take the matter of social distancing to the bedroom? A few days back, I was in a conversation with some old school mates and the subject of bedroom intimacy in the face of coronavirus pandemic was one of the subjects that came up.
As may be expected, some held the view that the stay at home advise of the government while well intended has inadvertently created convival opportunity for intimacy among couples and single people. Others spoke in favor of sexual restraint during the period of the Covid-19 pandemic and hinged their position on the need for people to observe social distancing.
My bedroom is sacred not a place for social gathering
“What has social distancing got to do with relationship with my wife or partner?”, Akin asked rhetorically and with so much energy behind his conviction in the matter. According to him, “social is social but my bedroom is not social, it is sacred chamber reserved for my wife and I”
While the discussion continued, Eugene, who had been silently listening all the while, finally broke his silence. For Eugene, he has no qualms with staying away from sexual intimacy during this period until there is some solution or at least a reduction in the spread of the virus. He argues that couples should be apart for at least 14 days just to be sure neither party shows up any symptoms of Covid-19. Better to be safe than sorry, he submitted.
In the course of the discussion, it became clear that the issue of social distancing is already causing rift in some relationships. This is more so among the relatively more exposed and literate members of the society. So, with this in mind, we ask the experts a few of the most pressing questions about sexual intimacy during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Should social distancing extend to the bedroom?
Dr Akanbi: Basically, social distancing is a way to control the spread of an infection. Whenever there is outbreak of infection, we usually advise social distancing as a way to control or minimize the spread. In some cases, this may involve advise for people to stay at home, keep a distance of about 1.5 meters or as advised by the Ministry of health and the Centre for the control of disease as in the case of Coronavirus pandemic. So, while not categorically saying social distancing should be extended to the bedroom, I believe couples are responsible enough to know when to keep the distance especially if either of the partner has a high risk factor of presenting with the infection.
Read Also: Covid-19 Infection – People At High Risk
Can Covid-19 be transmitted sexually?
Dr Akanbi: So far, we have not seen any seen any case that indicate sexual transmission. The infection is primarily spread through respiratory droplets. There are of course secondary mode of transmission of the infection such as shaking of hands, touching of contaminated surfaces, etc. but like I said, there has not been any pattern that suggest coronavirus is sexually transmissible.
Whereas there is no evidence that the Covid-19 can be transmitted via sexual intercourse, kissing is a very common practice during sexual intercourse, and the virus can be transmitted via saliva. So, this means that the virus may be transmissible by kissing.
So, social distancing should not stop us from having sex?
Igotalkmymind: No it shouldn’t, however if either you or your partner is a Covid-19 case, the advice is to steer clear of each other as much as possible.
Dr Akanbi: It is OK to have sex especially for people who don’t have symptoms, who have not been exposed to people with history of travel from high risk Countries, and have been staying close to within their immediate environment with little or no risk of the infection, then the situation might be slightly different with someone that with a recent likelihood of exposure. And if you live with a regular sexual partner, your spouse and you both do not have any symptoms, sex might actually be an amazing way to reignite the spark in your relationship, have fun, bond and take away the boredom during this stay at home period.
Can the bedroom still be fun during this pandemic?
Igotalkmymind: The advise right now is that we try to stay home as much as we can and really only interact with people for things that are essential, like groceries and medications. We should do our utmost best to keep some physical distance of about 6ft from other people. Obviously, this may pose a sex challenge especially for partners who are apart from each other.
In the next couple of weeks, we forsee a decrease in sexual intercourse even among married couples. But partners may explore other forms of expressing eroticism e.g. video calls (after all this the digital era!), sharing fun and erotic stories, reading of romance and erotic books/novels.
How is your bedroom?
Are you married or single? Are you practicing social distancing in the bedroom? Have you found other options to getting by in the bedroom without your significant other? We would be glad to hear from you. Share your thoughts and experience, you never know, you might be saving a marriage/ relationship.