The coronavirus isn't slowing celebrities down from making love connections. Although the entertainment industry came to a halt amid the pandemic, some are making the most of their time off.
Ben Affleck and Knives Out star, Ana de Armas, confirmed romance rumors as they were spotted kissing during a walk earlier this week. The actors, who co-star in the upcoming thriller Deep Water, are reportedly spending time together in Los Angeles.
"Ben and Ana are quarantined at his house, where they have been together since returning from Costa Rica," a source told E! News. "They have a simple daily routine which includes walking Ana's dog and ordering food, which gets delivered by Postmates. Every other day, Ben has been visiting his kids and Ana stays behind at the house."
Amber Heard and girlfriend Bianca Butti are apparently hanging out together months after dating rumors surfaced.
As for newer pairings, Demi Lovato and Ariana Grande reportedly have men in their lives and Nina Dobrev and Olympian Shaun White were photographed on a bike ride around Malibu, Calif. Meanwhile, many are wondering if there's more to Bachelor Nation’s Hannah Brown and Tyler Cameron's quarantine pod than meets the eye.
So, why are stars jumping into relationships amid the coronavirus pandemic? And is it a good idea? For answers, Yahoo Entertainment talked to relationship expert, Rachel DeAlto.
“It’s human nature to want companionship — we are wired for it. If you’ve been dating someone casually, nothing says 'let’s make this more official' like a lockdown,” she says. “It’s a way to avoid being lonely and quarantine is way more fun with someone you are falling for — but it can also be a double edged sword.”
DeAlto, an expert on Lifetime’s hit show Married at First Sight, says while it's “absolutely a good time to start relationships,” brand-new couples may want to take it slow. “I’m not a huge fan of quarantining with someone you just started dating,” she notes. “The hottest fires burn out the fastest, and spending 24/7 with someone you just met could go terribly wrong very fast. I’d rather people use the time to build stronger relationships virtually.”
However, the stress and anxiety surrounding the pandemic might also strengthen bonds. “It’s a bonding point and a challenge to overcome together,” DeAlto shares. “Weathering the pandemic can also help singles form connections even without a physical component.”
Those new to relationships may be living together already, which under “stay at home” orders, could be a good or bad thing. “Any unnatural acceleration to a relationship can be destabilizing. It may be bliss for a bit, but when things get real, there isn’t a foundation to handle the stress,” DeAlto adds. “We build goodwill with our partners throughout our time together, and that’s what gets us through a fight, or meltdown, or irritation.”
Cohabitation can “absolutely shorten” the “honeymoon phase” of a relationship, DeAlto says. “I think we’ll see as many breakups as babies.”
DeAlto says that “patience and empathy is important right now — regardless of the relationship length.” She adds, “People are stressed and anxious, but this will pass. Try to breathe and listen more than you reply.”
For the latest news on the evolving coronavirus outbreak, follow along here. According to experts, people over 60 and those who are immunocompromised continue to be the most at risk. If you have questions, please reference the CDC and WHO’s resource guides.
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