Corona uncoupling

corona_uncoupling_kathy_lette

“What’s in that brown paper bag on your desk?” I asked my girlfriend, over skype.

“It’s a bottle of whiskey. I got it for my husband.”

“What a great swap,” I laughed.

She laughed too, but then burst into tears. “Actually I’m ready to kill him.”

I’d always thought you had to go to Iraq or Afghanistan to get post-traumatic stress disorder, but it turns out you can also get it in a quiet cul-de-sac in suburbia. Before lockdown it was easy to turn a blind eye to a partner’s faults and foibles. But stuck in quarantine, Stevie Wonder could see them coming.

Our irritation with each other has become as scratchy as sandpaper. One of my girlfriends accused her husband of blinking too loudly. “Do you have to breathe in that annoying way?” another friend beseeched her spouse.

‘What a pain in the arse he is,’ women whine on their zoom calls. ‘If I could isolate the pain just to my arse, that would be a relief,” is the general consensus.

Most female complaints revolve around the lack of domestic and home schooling help from lazy hubbies. Spousal resentment has become so intense that when a girlfriend tells me she’s off to dig the veggie patch, I wonder if she’s using her shallow grave shovel.

Even if not driven to compost your companion, many of my girlfriends are desperately looking for a loophole in their marriage certificates. For our mother’s generation, any slight marital angst was soothed by simply burying your face in a pillow and screaming and screaming. But no more. Today, the majority of divorces are instigated by women. In post corona China, divorce statistics have soared, with 74% of proceedings initiated by exhausted, put-upon wives.

Wuhan’s divorce virus will probably prove just as infectious in Australia. Why? Well, can you hear that beating sound? Time’s winged chariot, folks. The pandemic’s horrendous death toll brings with it the realisation that tempus is fugit-ing like there’s no tomorrow. Say you contracted Covid19, what would you regret? Not the things you’ve done, but the things you haven’t done. Nobody wants to go screaming down memory lane thinking, “Gee, these are dull memories.”

After lockdown, women don’t want to stay at home tending herbaceous borders. We want to cross borders, into exotic places. We want to get a pet quokka, and wear nothing but sequins. We want to be told off by our progeny because they saw us coming out of a nightclub at two am, and reply, “You’re mistaken, kids. I wasn’t coming out. I was going in!”

We want to find a bloke who’ll adore us, not bore us and do all our chores for us. How refreshing to get into a man’s pants and not have to launder them later.

Quarantined in our homes for weeks on end, we’ve have started to feel like terrapins exploring the familiar edges of our aquariums. With one day blurring into another, chronic day-ja-vu has set in. And if you’re cooped up, slaving away for an unappreciative spouse, a wife begins to wonder if the marital knot is actually tied around her neck.

To stem the divorce deluge, China’s National People’s Congress is considering a proposal for a 30-day cooling-off period for couples petitioning for a corona uncoupling.

Having endured two traumatic divorces, before groping for a ripcord to parachute out of your marriage, it might be worth first trying a re-negotiation. Similar to a mobile phone contract, wives could haggle for an updated deal including a lot of perks in the package like foot rubs, breakfast in bed and help around the house.

I used to think that the ultimate proof of female superiority is the fact that women live longer than men. But I’ve now realized that’s just so typically male – leaving all the cleaning up to a woman.

In short, boys, if you don’t want to be taken to the cleaners, get cleaning. Otherwise your wife will be taking a big dose of “HRT – Husband Replacement Therapy”… which just happens to be the name of my new comic novel. Gift wrap it for Mother’s Day. Who knows? A hearty laugh together just might prevent that Husband-ectomy. Despite Trump’s bleach injection suggestion, laughter is the only medicine we have right now.

Buy your copy of HRT: Husband Replacement Therapy now!

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Making headlines

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Aired on May 3, 2020

The Chris Smith Show on 4BC Australia

Chris Smith speaks with Kathy Lette about her new book, ‘HRT: Husband Replacement Therapy’

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Published on May 3, 2020

Sun Herald, Sydney

An article by Kathy entitled "Battle of the sexes winner is in - COVID has called it"

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Published May 2020

The Australian Women’s Weekly

Juliet Rieden talks to Kathy and Brian O'Doherty about finding love and laughter.

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