For couples, does distance really make the heart grow fonder?

Published in Blog on March 25th 2024

Long distance relationships are a reality for so many of us, but few of us have to deal with a partner spending months in space.

Currently showing on Netflix, Spaceman, is an unusual and moving meditation on the distance that can develop between partners in a couple. The lonely astronaut, Jakob, played by Adam Sandler, cultivates a relationship with an arachnoid-style alien after 190 days in space. Meanwhile, back on earth, his very pregnant wife Lenka (played by Carey Mulligan) makes the decision to leave him.

The film’s theme is human loneliness and while Jakob maintains he isn’t “the loneliest man in the world” his wife is feeling his absence, both geographically and emotionally. Flashbacks shows the couple deeply in love and explores the potential motivation behind Jakob’s wanderlust.

Many couples wait for their relationship to hit crisis point before they seek therapy.

By the time Lenka decides to leave Jakob, things have deteriorated between the couple to such an extent that one wonders whether much can be salvaged. Many couples wait for their relationship to hit crisis point before they seek therapy. And, while much can be gained from accessing help at this stage, the earlier couples look for relationship support, the greater the potential there is to prevent the relationship deteriorating.

This modern retelling of George Eliot’s story of human redemption Silas Marner explores a couple relationship falling part and the reasons some of us flee from intimacy. Well worth a watch for anyone interested in the power of human relationships

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