The first news reports of a Coronavirus baby boom emerged from China. As the virus spread to Europe, similar news reports of a mass, socially distanced shagfest have appeared over here. I can’t be alone in thinking this is a ridiculous idea.
Let us first explore the impact of social distancing on people like myself, those in marriages or long term relationships with dependent children. For short, not to mention comedic effect, I’ll refer to this population as ‘breeders.’
It would be wrong to suggest us breeders will be leading completely sexless lives during this crisis, but I think less intimacy could be forgiven, if not expected. As much as we all love our families, there is something to be said about absence making the heart grow fonder.
I’m not suggesting we should all aspire to lead the life of an oil rig worker, spending weeks or months apart from our families. On the other hand, spending every moment of every day in the company of our spouses / partners while also having to do childcare and homeschool? Well, I think it’s fair to say this is hardly an aphrodisiac. Living in these socially distanced times is emotionally exhausting and reproduction will not be at the top of most people’s ‘to do’ list.
Added to this, us breeders have personal experience of maternity wards. I think most of us will probably want to avoid hospitals and maternity wards until a Covid-19 vaccine is available and this madness ends. On this basis, Covid-19 must surely be the best advertisement for using reliable birth control since Boris Johnson became Prime Minister (which admittedly wasn’t all that long ago, but you get my point).
Now let’s take a look at those in serious relationships, but living apart, the Living Apart Together crowd or LATs. Assuming these couples are adhering to Government guidance and not having illicit rendezvous, they won’t be getting intimate at all.
I find myself worrying about those who live alone (for whatever reason) and those in fledgling relationships, relationships that may not last several months of being unable to meet. It’s all very well to have a laugh at the outrageous amounts of sex co-habiting couples are having / not having (delete as applicable). Putting intimacy and sex to one side, socially distancing when you don’t have a significant other or can’t see your significant other must be very difficult indeed.
Of course, there are those people who are very happy to be on their own. For those who want the company, this is going to be a very tough period indeed, probably tougher than the whirlwind of insanity us breeders are presently dealing with as we try and keep our children entertained and educated while keeping screen use within acceptable limits.
If you believe what’s being written about cybersex, it is apparently surging among those couples who can’t physically meet. I appreciate that fertility treatments have moved on in leaps and bounds over recent years, but I don’t believe things have advanced to a point where you can get pregnant via fibre optic cable. In other words, these guys won’t be making babies (sorry to be a dad and to be all serious for a moment, but if you are indulging in this behaviour, please be very careful because revenge porn is a very real risk).
If we exclude young, unmarried people in their late teens and twenties who, as we all know, don’t have sex, there’s one clearly identifiable group I can see having a higher chance of creating babies at this time. It’ll be young / youngish couples who are married or co-habit, don’t have children and have been furloughed.
I mean come on, these guys have plenty of spare time because they aren’t working and aren’t having to keep youngsters entertained or schooled. They’ll still have time free even once they’ve washed the car, done the ironing, gone outside and clapped the NHS, watched a Netflix box set or two and checked on their socially isolated parents.
One can but imagine how they’re putting that time to use. Even so, I can’t see this leading to a Coronavirus baby boom. Seeing as no one else is making babies, it’s unfair to expect this one cohort to do the impossible and make up for the rest of us.
Nah, I don’t see a baby boom taking place at all. Once we can all socialise again things may change, but something tells me maternity wards will probably be very quiet in nine months time.