In a contest of marital cliches, communication may be the
front-runner, but date night is a close second. While I could spend
all week coming up with valid reasons not to spend precious free
time engaged in artificially romantic endeavors, the truth is we
Here are the top 10 reasons why:
Every relationship requires maintenance. Seeing a movie or
taking a walk with your spouse is much less expensive (and more
fun) than twice weekly sessions on an outdated sofa in a
counselor's office. Date night also costs a fraction of what you'd
spend from your side of an attorney's desk. Think of these
expenditures as an investment not only in your happiness, but in
your long-term financial health as well.
We all get tired of looking at our partners. No matter how much
they set us a flutter in the beginning, the sparkle wears off.
Sometimes (admit it) you check out other people's spouses and
think, "Dang! That's a hot one!" Rest assured that while you are
mid-melt, someone else is checking out your partner. It's nothing
to be ashamed of, just human nature. Date night - especially if you
both take the time to shave in the right spots - can remind you
what you saw in this person in the first place.
The extreme urge to get very far away from the creatures you
birthed is natural. We all need adult time. Unfortunately, the
guilt that comes along with that desire is common. Date nights are
the exception because you know that taking care of your
relationship is one of the single most important things you can do
for your children's overall well-being. You know that, right?
Between the diapers, the (oops) late electric bill, and that odd
smell in the hallway, romance can get away from you-quick.
Sometimes you wonder how you ended up with this person. Getting
away from everything together helps you focus on each other-on what
attracted you. You may be surprised to find you're still kind of
into each other-at least until you need to get home to unclog the
We all get selfish. When the routine at home gets stressful, we
seek comforts, from eating the foods we like to watching what we
want on TV. All of these petty preferences divide us. The great
thing about date night is that it has an agenda. Even if you're
only going to a coffee shop to share a triple-choco-latte, you're
there to be together. That's the only objective.
When you have young kids, you can start to feel frumpy fast. If
you don't have a date night, what excuse have you got to dress up?
Some of us end up covered in spit-up most days. Even if you dress
in "real clothes" for work every day, you still need the glamour
date night provides. Couples need to see each other at top form
once in a while. Remember, you don't have to spend a lot of money
to look cute. (But if you've got a little extra, spend it on
Your kids will enjoy seeing their parents go out and do
something fun. They might not admit it, and they may even try to
pour on a little guilt, but it can only do them good to see mom and
dad make each other a priority. You'll be setting a good example,
and they really do like that junky food we fix on our way out to
something better. (STOP feeling guilty. It's not every night!)
Seriously, hair can take a long time! The point here is not that
you're not already bathing on a regular basis, but that everyone
needs special things to look forward to. Sometimes our regular
work-a-day and take-care-of-the-kids lives don't offer many
opportunities to shine. Maybe you aren't working your dream job or
slicing your carrots on granite countertops, but you can make date
night a bright spot on your calendar.
In the early years of a relationship, friends are always asking
how you met. This inevitably leads to sweet or funny or mushy
stories of eyes locking and hands trembling and
blahty-blah-blah-blah. But it's fun, and reminds you why you (see
above) a) find each other hot, and b) used to be quite into each
other. So live a little, in the past. You don't want to rely on
memories for all your contentment because that would mean you're
not busy making new ones, but reminiscing about good times together
(not just at the beginning) is good for your future.
And the number one reason to date your spouse:
Sex is really, really good for you. You need it. Just like food
and water, it's fundamental to good health - both your physical
well-being and that of your relationship. Obviously, date night is
critical. How do you expect to get naked with someone you can't
have a conversation with? A scheduled date night is not the
end-all-be-all solution to every relationship trouble, but it's one
little thing you can do. And it's not the grand gestures that
define a relationship; it's the little things, added up over time,
So think little, as in-get a little.
See more of Lela's stories here.
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