A Realistic Date Night at Home – Life After Babies.
While life starts to settle into a pattern of diaper changing, rocking, and shushing a baby to sleep, it seems to also fall into a pattern of sweatpants, baby conversations, and separate night time rituals for parents. Most couples turn to technology and tune each other out at this point of the day. The problem? You are separately making connections and working on relationships through devices that are not the relationship you should be focused on: YOURS. We are just as guilty as you are. Our home is full of iphones, ipads, smart tv’s, apple tv’s, laptops, etc. These “things” do not help a marriage stay connected. But they are part of life, and you can’t just ignore that fact. Instead of listing 100 cheesy, absurd date night ideas that you may pin to pinterest but never actually implement, I decided to be REAL. I’m going to describe our ideas of dating at home. Our Rule: You must reconnect through words, touch, and emotions. Bedtime is exhausting for our house. My husband tries, and when I ask, he will help. However, I regret it within 45 minutes because of the silence that comes from upstairs. He falls asleep EVERY.SINGLE.TIME he helps with kids’ bedtime. I won’t lie, there are nights when I lavish in this moment. 8:30pm and I have a silent home and control of the remote – with NO ONE asking anything of me. I may consider this the best kind of date night. I break out my hidden freezer chocolate, pour wine, and just relax. But more than one night a week, and it’s boring. I start to miss my husband. Once I get the kids to bed (all three -almost four- of them), I come down stairs to a cleaned kitchen, a poured glass of wine and a handsome husband. I should appreciate this more often. Writing it down has made me realize that I take this nightly moment for granted. The typical conversation of “How was your day?” begins, but this is when we actually TALK about things. We leave our phones in the kitchen and either have the tv on or music in the background, but we are focused on the conversation. We can talk about daily crap, vent about work and kids, rehash anything that needs worked on, revisit the (UGH) budget, or just talk about the weather. I will say that this can become stale over time, so paying attention and really wanting to know about one another needs to stay at the forefront of the mind. Step One of Dating at Home: Talk: Learn what’s happening in the other’s friendships, with coworkers, at work, or hobbies.
- Make a running list throughout your days of things you want to tell your partner. It’s so easy to let the little moments go without sharing them.
- Flirtatious Words: Whether silly and cheesy or direct and promising, words can make a person excited.
- Flirtatious Touching: Playing footsie, small massages, brushing hands purposefully, all are calculated flirting techniques. All of which send the message “I am attracted to YOU.”
- Watch the same show
- Play board games
- Build a puzzle
- Read books
- Share Time: Even if one of you is obsessed with ESPN and the other likes to knit, that’s okay. Do them in the same room while your feet touch. You can talk when needed and are still connecting, just make sure the other steps are included in your date night!
- We are a bit more awake
- Kids are still in their own room
- Feeling friskier
- Both parties are more likely in the mood as this point