Date night has become a staple of modern family life, allowing mum and dad to take some time out to reconnect and reaffirm their relationship away from the pressures and demands of family life.
While tired new parents who are struggling to simply find the time for everyday tasks may find the idea of a date night counterintuitive and may even resist the idea of choosing to spend time apart from their children, establishing a date night habit is an important way for couples to keep the romance of their relationship alive. It can help to strengthen their bond and give them resources to draw upon at times when family life becomes stressful or threatens to drive them apart.
New parents who are worried about time or money pressures preventing them from fulfilling a regular date night commitment need not fret. There are many ways for couples to connect without spending a fortune or even leaving the family home.
Check out these easy, romantic date night suggestions and learn how to establish this habit in your own home!
The Memory Tour
If you have childcare arranged but do not fancy heading out to an expensive restaurant or getting dressed up to go dancing, why not consider a literal trip down memory lane with your loved one?
Couples often find that the car is a great place to reconnect, and taking a driving tour of places that have special meaning in your own relationship is a great way to bring back memories of when your love was new and fresh.
Sharing a drive together and talking about old times provides a private space for mums and dads to share recollections of things they love about each other or moments that have meant something. This is the perfect way to set a romantic mood for the return home.
A meal at home is a great date night option for parents of younger children who cannot arrange childcare, and once baby is sleeping through the night, mum and dad can make the most of time together at home.
Take turns hosting the meal, setting the table with quality crockery and cutlery. You might even wish to invest in a special prop, such as engravable wine glasses with a special phrase or date that is important to you as a couple. Use these only for date night dining, and when you see them, it will signal that the evening is something special.
If you don’t want to get worked up cooking for your meal, order out. Make sure to eat facing each other, with distractions such as smart phones and TVs turned off, and use the time to talk about subjects other than the everyday. Share dreams and memories, and avoid contentious topics.
If childcare is hard to arrange but your children are of school age, consider enjoying a date day with your partner instead. Book time away from work and block off the date in your calendar to spend with your loved one at home, free from interruptions!
Once the kids are at school, fill the day with quality time together. Share a meal, watch a film (it’s less likely one of you will be asleep by the end if you do this in the daytime!) or relax together knowing you have hours before the kids come home!
Date Night Dinner Parties
If you have a group of friends with families, creating a date night dinner party circle can be a good way to create opportunities for grown-up socialising with your partner. While some might consider it strange to interact with others in the time set aside for spending as a couple, being around other people can help to remind you of the traits that first attracted you to your partner. It can also encourage you to look at them through the eyes of others, a practice that has been known to strengthen attraction and keep ongoing relationships fresh.
Take turns hosting, and make sure everyone makes an effort, perhaps by choosing a theme or a dress code. Make sure to leave long gaps between gatherings to avoid conversation becoming stale or evenings becoming predictable for participants.
Remember that the point of the evening is to connect with your significant other. Never overstay your welcome; the hosts will also need time alone.
Why Have Date Nights?
The important thing about a date night is that it should provide an opportunity for both partners to really listen, be heard and continue to establish their identity as an attractive individual who is worthy of their partner’s affection. Without nurturing through means such as date nights, this can easily become lost in the early days of frantic family life.