Love (and sex) during Covid

Love and sex, together or separately, will always be with us. They are inherent to our species. And there will always be situations that will change our behavior, our patterns of reproduction, our risks.

If you’re reading this, it’s because the title caught your attention. This reminded you of the Gabriel García Márquez book you read in school: Love in the Time of Cholera. This story in which Florentino Ariza, when he falls in love, suffers from the same symptoms of cholera and abuses the quarantine to devote himself non-stop to the art of love.

I don’t see many parallels between the story of the book and love in the times of Covid. Florentino reported abdominal pain, vomiting, and intense general malaise, which I believe may be the maximum expression of the famous “butterflies in the stomach” described when falling in love. I doubt, on the other hand, that anyone is mistaken Symptoms of covid with cupid infatuation: dry cough, muscle aches, loss of smell and taste, which can put an end to the love experience, which undoubtedly involves the 5 senses. Also, unlike the time of cholera, our quarantines did not last 40 days, but were indefinite, disturbing, and sometimes downright eternal…rather, they seem to have served to separate lovers and satiate cohabitants.

But beyond the parallels between the two health emergencies, there is no doubt that the pandemic has changed the way we love and make love, fornicate, have sex; tell him what suits him best.

I don’t see many parallels between the story of the book and love in time.

And now, specifically, what happened? different phenomena. Some studied, some perceived but not objectified, and many that remain to be seen.

I remember phrases said at the beginning of 2020… “nobody will have sex: singles because of quarantine, married people because of boredom”, “there will be no teenage pregnancies because everyone is at home”… Big mistake. If history shows us anything, it’s that love and sex are relentless, tireless, imperishable and omnipresent. There are many examples: increase in birth rates after earthquakes and wars, people who (as heterosexuals) have had homosexual experiences when meeting in situations where there are no representatives of the other sex, hidden gender despite intense surveillance… The impulse to meet through sexual contact, Obviously, it always accompanies us and there is no stressful situation intense enough to suppress it.

As expected, the sex it was neither reduced nor postponed. The fact that we can go out with limited time has changed our habits. In some families, their teenage children were allowed to have sex indoors, attesting to an up-to-date PCR (and hopefully with the requirement to have condoms handy!). The use of dating apps has increased dramatically. And, let’s remember, time was limited, so the very Chilean proverb “two tablespoons and a potato” never applied better. It is worth noting that more than one admitted that he was satisfied with the simplification of the problem. And surely more than one person blushed under their mask when he heard the story of these new, fleeting and obvious encounters.

If history shows us anything, it’s that love and sex are relentless, tireless, imperishable and omnipresent.

Preventing pregnancy became an odyssey because sometimes it was simply impossible to get contraceptives from the doctor’s office or go to buy them. Contrary to early warnings, there was no baby boom or baby boom version 2.0 (remember, the original refers to the post-World War II baby boom). It’s impossible to know whether this is due to greater use of contraceptive methods (I don’t see it likely), to a lower frequency of sexual activity (that doesn’t seem plausible either), or to a higher rate of pregnancy terminations. which are not registered anywhere…

Love and sex, together or separately, will always be with us. They are inherent to our species. And there will always be situations that will change our behavior, our patterns of reproduction, our risks. I hope that as humanity we do not lose our curiosity to analyze our behavior and also take precautions so that there are no unfortunate consequences. There are also mixed personal responsibilities and institutional responsibilities.

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