Here is a lockdown confession. I spent an evening last week watching the film The Bodyguard and just caught myself nearly blubbing over ‘I will always love you’. The power ballad, a hit for Whitney Houston, is something people usually remember from the film. Strange fact here, it was actually written by Dolly Parton about a career break up with someone, whereas Dolly Parton’s own hit D.I.V.O.R.C.E was written by someone else…
One of the best things to come out of this lockdown situation is not the excuse to watch old 90s rom com thrillers (the more recent West End version of The Bodyguard being considerably better). It is knowing there are many people willing to help which is heart-warming. Dolly Parton has donated one million dollars to the COVID-19 virus research being carried out by Moderna. Looking after each other is important now.
COVID-19 has had an effect on many personal relationships which is a cause for concern.
For instance, apparently there were more than 100,000 divorces in England and Wales last year according to the Office for National Statistics. The highest number for five years. Admittedly this figure is concerned with last year, but many forecasters predict that the effect of lockdown will not see this trend reversing.
Meanwhile, Citizens Advice Bureau reported that ‘On the first weekend of September (2020), the divorce advice webpage amassed more than 2200 views, a 25% rise on the same weekend in 2019’.
Great news then, that the counselling service Relate has recently received National Lottery funding for an advice hub. The Relatehub offers half an hour of advice to people who are struggling in their personal relationships. Relationships and Wellbeing Advisors are available to speak to and there is access to online self-help resources. The service is available at no charge to those whose relationships have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Relate confirms that relationship counselling isn’t always about finding reconciliation for the partnership, although of course this does happen for many. In some cases, the desired outcome might be a ‘better breakup’. It would not have been the case without a coming together to understand what went wrong.
Sadly, many break-ups will inevitably lead to more financial difficulties in the short term. This can cause additional stress at any already difficult time. Knowing the full implications and planning for this can be helpful.
For anyone seeking relationship advice, follow the link to the Relate hub on our website www.dancefund.org.uk/advice-and-services/wellbeing to find out more about this valuable service.