The importance of date nights, why don’t we rate that importance? If we asked you to rate date nights on a scale of 0 to 10, with 10 being the highest score, what would you give it?
If you answered 10, that’s okay, you’re on the right track. But if you came back to us and challenged our scale and said it actually deserves 100 as the highest rating, then goodness, you’re a genuine troubleshooter. Bravo! Kudos to you. You can troubleshoot your car’s hazard lights, but if you can also troubleshoot your marriage as cleverly, spouses will be all over you begging you to counsel their erring spouses. ‘Tell my husband to switch off the TV once in awhile so he can pay attention to me.Or, ‘Can you coach my wife on how to tone down her anger, so we can focus on our happiness together?’
Marriage counselors, buddies and therapists sure have a tough job, but maybe all we need is a home made repair. To troubleshoot a sagging marriage, you don’t need a sophisticated and powerful toolkit, but you need to direct your efforts to the importance of date nights and organizing them regularly to keep the flame a-burnin’.
What are we driving at? We’re honing in on the love equation tweaking your love life so that you can come up with the magic formula to remain interested in each other. One way is to bring back romance into your life. Remember those courtship days when both of you couldn’t wait to kiss and hug and say, I love you?
Importance of Date Nights: Have a Budget?
Well, we got the mortgage and the kids, summer camps, so date nights might have to take a lower priority, you argue.
Who are you kidding?
Date nights don’t have to be escapades that will cost you an arm and a leg. Why, a date night could take place just around the bend. All you need is to bend your creativity a bit.
Are you on a low budget? Here are ways to twirl your marriage with these fun but inexpensive date nights.
On a nippy spring evening, wear a pair of old sneakers, a cotton tank top and really skimpy shorts. Head for the park (wait until dusk or dark, don’t start your adventure until the kids in the neighborhood are home having dinner) and hold hands. Hold hands, we repeat. Keep walking. If it’s really nippy, you’ll soon be inching closer together for some heat.
‘It sure is nippy tonight.’‘
‘A little bit.’‘
‘What if I put my arms around you’like this. Feel a tad warmer?’‘
‘That’s lovely, yes, thanks.’
Parks have all kinds of nooks and crannies. Find a discrete spot and act like you were 15 and 16 years old again. Do you recall those days, or are you still thinking of the mortgage? Shame on you, sailor.
Here’s another idea for a low budget date night. How about going to a pizza joint where they allow you to bring your own bottle of wine? After pizza, you could take in the film classics that you both watched faithfully when you were younger and ardent movie buffs. Clark Gable, Steve McQueen, Debbie Reynolds and Shirley McLaine are stars that have graced the television screens in millions of households and they’re still as good as gold. If your wife always adored Paul Newman, you could probably rent Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid for her.
Sports oh, this never fails especially if you’re both fitness fanatics. Dig up those old badminton sets or basketball or roller blades and have a friendly duel. Whoever misses a hit or falls down or does not put the ball inside the net gets to say ‘I LOVE YOU.’
Another idea: fill up your tank and take your car for a spin. Ride along a quiet highway somewhere out of town. If there’s a full moon out, ‘well you know what they say about how a full moon can dramatically enhance your mood. It might not be a bad idea to bring along a blanket so you could stop at a nice lookout, gaze at the stars and talk about the days of yonder ‘like how you first met’what you thought of her hair and how you found out that he had no sense whatsoever of matching his tops and pants. Yet, you loved him even more.
If the budget doesn’t get in the way, you could treat each other to a concert downtown and then have a quiet meal in a very elegant and small restaurant where the waiters have charming accents and they make you feel like royalty.
Date Nights are Important: Why?
Date nights are important for a myriad of reasons.
- Taking time off from the kids – we’ve got to admit that the arrival of children robs us of our time together. There are cries in the night that awaken us because the child had a nightmare, the chauffeuring around tends to make us bone tired, arguments with teenagers drain our energies, and there’s a string of doctors appointments, school activities, the occasional problems with curfew and hanging out with the wrong crowd. These can get us all tangled up inside, forgetting that there’s also a marriage that needs looking after.
- Injecting excitement into a stale marriage – once in awhile we need to feel that the adrenalin in us is still pumping and is in abundant supply. Do you remember the first time love hit you and you felt that every nerve of your being tingled with excitement? We need to feel that excitement many times over regardless of how long we’ve been married: five, ten, twelve, twenty-five. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with breathing life into a stagnant stream. Don’t ever get sucked into believing that your marriage feels like a ‘recycled’ union of two tired and bored souls.
- Getting re-acquainted‘ – after several years into a marriage, some of us may feel that we know our spouse like the back of our hand. On the flipside, there are those who complain that in spite of being together all these years, they feel they don’t know their spouse at all. ‘I’m really married to a stranger’ is a declaration often uttered to a therapist or marriage counselor. By organizing date nights, we’ll have a sixth sense into what makes our spouse tick. When we dated the first time, we had a long mental list of things we wanted to know about our significant other. There was consuming interest about what the other ate, bought, thought, felt, and their views on nuclear science, the greening of the environment and the roaring of lions. It’s vital that we keep that interest alive. Curiosity won’t kill the cat, far from it, but it will kill the passions if we don’t exercise it.
- Confirming love, not rejection – imagine the emotional turmoil that brews when we treat our marriage like a routine activity. It’s the most fragile of institutions, and a union that is so easy to walk away from. The reason many couples divorce is that they neglected date nights, when they actually are the channels where we get to express our love. By making time for date nights, we deliver the message to our spouse that rejection is out of the question, and that you’re committed, more than ever, to make your marriage work despite the odds.
One final word about the importance of date nights: don’t turn them into ‘I told you so’ sessions or an opportunity to discuss debts, renovation plans or dental bills. Turn them into ‘I just wanted to tell you that’ sessions. They’re a much more effective attention-grabber than’
…I told you so
Date nights make them a habit!