The Power of Date Nights…
A piece of advice an old married couple once gave me: always date your spouse. I never knew what that meant before marriage, but it didn’t take me long to find out. It’s very common to get sucked into the doldrums of routine. Every night we do the same thing with the children… dinner, baths, books, sleep. There is something fundamentally exhausting about the monotony of life and schedules. Sometimes my husband and I find ourselves so embedded in the routine that we realized we haven’t had a real conversation in several days! When all is said and done, we fall into bed, exhausted and drained. And that is when I realize: I miss my spouse! Well not in the literal sense. But I do miss our alone time.
This is why dates nights are a must in our household. One-on-one individual time is imperative to our sustainability as a married unit. At least once a month, we plan a kid-less night to live, laugh, and paint the town red. I find something sassy to wear, primp in the mirror, and join my man on a night on the town. Even if we do spend half the evening laughing about something funny our 4-year-old said and flipping through saved pics of the kids, we do it together. The important factor is that we are in each others presence with our undivided attention, and we are laughing together. Alone. For a few hours, I can relinquish my mom duties to someone else, and just date my husband. We always go home feeling fulfilled and newly in love.
Many parents forget to date or are too busy to plan something. But I have news for you… you absolutely can. Here are some tips to make dating fun:
- Predictability. Choose a standing date or night of the week. Whether its every Thursday, or every second Saturday. It’s nice to plan in advance and make your reservations early. Having that standing date also means there is enough time to plan for a babysitter. I even send my husband an appointment in our shared calendar for giggles.
- Adventure. Choose a new restaurant. Wear a new dress. Do something wild and crazy together. Dance the night away. Spicing up the scene breaks the monotony and keeps the relationship young.
- Alternate. Take turns planning. Alternate who makes the reservation and plans the evening. Try to outdo each other in creativity. Make it a surprise!
- No Phones. Put your phones away. If you’re like most parents, you only have a few hours of alone time. Make sure to give each other undivided attention.
- Romance. One of the keys to a good marriage is romance. Embrace your love, hold hands, enjoy a kiss, play footsie under the table, and flirt! After all, it is a date!
It’s easy to get wrapped into life and forget to date your spouse. But I urge you to put in the effort, you’ll be glad you did.