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date night

We have friends who live in England, who seemed very perplexed when we asked them if they have a weekly date night, going out, just the two of them.They said that they have “date night” every night in a way, as they eat dinner together every night after putting their daughter to bed. They get home, sit with her while she eats, talk about her day, then give her a bath, read, etc. On weekends, of course they eat all of their meals together. While we are huge proponents of the family dinner, we love the way that they prioritize their relationship, and beyond that, this is just what works for their lives. One thing they couldn’t understand is how Americans can afford to have the date night ritual, as it means hiring a babysitter, plus paying for dinner out, which has to happen at times anyway, for socializing with friends and work dinners. Since they both have demanding jobs that require travel, staying home is a bonus, and this is how they stay connected. This nightly ritual also means that they really know the details of each other’s days.

For us, we find that sometimes it isn’t until the weekend that we catch up with our spouse…or on a date night. How do you handle having quality time with your spouse, not at the expense of family time, or your bank account?

 

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Comments (5)

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  1. Posted by: EJ

    We avoid paying a sitter by swapping babysitting time with friends. The way it works for us is that the parents put the kid(s) to bed themselves, then another parent from the neighborhood, who knows our kid(s) and who our kid(s) know, comes over and hangs out. My husband and I get out for a late-night date. The following weekend, we swap: One of us goes to the friend’s house so they can get out for a date. It can make for a late evening, but I find it more relaxing that when we’re out, we’re not thinking of the running meter on the sitter’s time.

  2. Posted by: TD

    We do what that English couple does–dinner every night after bedtime. We have date nights too but we also work together (in addition to our separate careers). I don’t know. I didn’t know this was a thing.

  3. Posted by: eli

    we do the same as your friends, but with a few nights out peppered in. we can’t afford to do a babysitter and evening out much more than once a month. our nights in are every bit as romantic — with a focus on food, music, conversation, and cocktails. when our daughter goes ‘down’ it feels like the old days …

  4. Posted by: Annie Kip

    Hi – my situation is different, but equally as challenging. I am divorced with three teens and have a beau who is also dicorced with three teens. We don’t live together and don’t plan to mo.e in until after the kids are off to college. Our time together is very limited, so we guard the weekends we have “off” (from kid duty) very carefully. We try to spend time focused on being together and don’t usually plan too much socializing. Beyond that, we connect via text every morning and say good night on the phone every evening before bed. It is the best we can do at this point!

  5. After dinner is tv time for our son so my husband and I tend to linger at the dinner table for another 20-30 minutes. This is
    when it feels like we have some space to talk. We also have some of our best conversations on walks – which is a great opportunity to try out a mothers helper or arrange a weekend playdate. Only an hour is nothing for a helper or a playdate but that’s a longtime for a walk and we always seem to get a lot “done” during these walks. Decisions made, misunderstandings cleared up, etc.

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