There are all these books and professionals that say that continuing to go out on dates after marriage is important to communication. This becomes even more essential after children as it’s probably your only time to talk about anything besides diapers. I completely understand the importance of this advice. As I am currently at home with my kids all day, the idea of getting away sounds heavenly. Especially if it’s for a dinner that I don’t have to cook or clean up after.
But do we put too much pressure on these nights? I think that Sir and I have been out on maybe three dates since we moved, probably only one since Tiny was born. And on the rare occasion that we do get to go out, we build it up to be a huge event. And when (not if) it isn’t everything we created in our minds, we feel like we failed the date.
In the Dismas Hardy novels by John Lescroart (an excellent series by the way) he and his wife go to the same bar every Wednesday as their date night. No pressure to dress up, no guilt about spending half the paycheck at a fancy place. It sounds so calming and relaxing. That’s what I want, I want to relax when I get a chance to go out. I’m not sure if we’ll ever get to the point and we can manage it every week, but that sounds great too. I love the idea of looking good for Sir and having a great adventure somewhere, but I spend all day every day catering and entertaining two small children. Just having a drink and eating something unhealthy is perfect.
I’m sure I don’t speak for everyone, I have no intention to do so. But I encourage those who continue to be let down by their overly complicated date nights, to just enjoy yourselves. Go to a bar, have a drink and eat some loaded fries. Get a latte and walk around the supermarket or Target without having to run after a screaming toddler. Don’t talk about all the laundry sitting at home, and no puke or poop stories. Talk about dreams, vent about coworkers, feed each other. When you get home you can go back to your lives. In my case, that means following orders from Sir and two little children. Maybe you can curl up with a nice cup of coffee and book for me.