Marriage Fitness : What To Do When Date Night Is Impossible

Marriage Fitness

I’m apart of a mommy Facebook group.  Valentines Day was coming up and each mommy talked about their date night plans.  I sat on the other side of the screen scrolling through responses, and felt a bit of envy.  If only we lived by family, then we could do date night.  Date night would be easy if we could find a trusted sitter.  These were the thoughts and feelings going through my mind.

There are plenty of benefits to being a military spouse.  Time is not one of them.  Between the constant moving and a spouse who is gone a lot.   It’s hard to cut out time for each other.  I’m going to be honest in saying that date night is one of the things me and my husband have neglected in our marriage.

We didn’t neglect date night on purpose.  We both didn’t feel comfortable with strangers watching our kids.  Even though I was fine with that, I did envy those who had family around to watch their little ones.

The only times we did get date night is when we visited back home and my in-laws watched the kids.  The thing is…we don’t visit back home very often.

How it Affected our Marriage

Over time, I realized that by not having date night we were becoming a child centered marriage. That’s great…but not for the fitness of our marriage.  I started to feel like it was all about the kids, and not about me and my husbands marriage.  Then fear set in and I worried that we would be one of those couples who only talked about the kids and whose kids were the only thing they had in common.

I cherish my relationship with my husband and needed a connection outside of our children. Since it was hard to do date night, what were we to do?

The solution

During the time I was struggling with how to do date nights.  I was sent a program by Mort Fertel called “7 Secrets for Fixing Your Marriage.”  His series offers solutions to a wide range of marital issues.  These topics included infidelity, financial problems, depression, and more.

I browsed though each topic and found one specific to date night.  As I began to listen, Mort touched on very important key elements that really helped me.  He emphasized that it’s not about having the ideal date night.  It’s about using whatever circumstances I’m in to my advantage.  Here are a few quotes from the digital download.

” It’s about creating time”

“it’s not about the ideal date night, it’s about working with what you have”.

“how can i tweak this and use this situation for our benefit”.

Marriage Fitness

“the people who are successful are people who are looking for opportunities to move the needle just a little bit”.  

 

What did I do?

I’m not a night owl like my husband.  As soon as the kids are sleep so am I. However, I realized that after bed time I was missing out on time with my husband.  After bed time was a great time to create a date night.

Once the children were in bed me and my husband would watch a movie, or just talked.  It was amazing how staying up a little past my bed time helped me feel more connected to my husband.  Sure it wasn’t a night on the town, but that didn’t matter.  What matter is that we got alone time to connect with each other, and that what was important to me.

Marriage Fitness

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21 Comments

  1. It really is so important to stay connected in your marriage especially after having kids. My husband and I don’t go out often but we do late night movies once the kids are in bed. It’s a fun way to connect with him while we laugh and watch comedies or binge watch Nurse Jackie!

  2. Oh man I’m feeling that in our marriage too since hubby is away and it is just me and the baby for a while. This military life hasn’t been easy but post child it seems to be putting a bigger strain on us. What a great program and a simple tweak to get you the date night you wanted. I’ll have to check it out.

  3. My marriage has absolutely become child centered so I really relate to this post! We don’t do date nights for a lot of reasons similar to you – no trusted sitter, job complications (husband works a lot of evenings and weekends). My family is close by, but they don’t babysit late at night or for extended periods.
    Thanks for sharing what worked for you, and the program!

  4. We don’t live near family, either, so we are in the same boat as you. Date nights are pretty much non-existent, but we make sure to take advantage of the time after the kids go to bed, and during naps (if we’re both not working). This program sounds interesting, I have to check it out! 🙂

  5. Every night after our kid is asleep, my husband and I talk about each other’s days and any random stuff. Someday’s it is only 5 minutes before exhaustion and sleep take over, other days it’s 30, some days we just watch some funny videos together, but what I have realized is that this time is very important for what you described as “marriage fitness”. Without it, we’d be just two people raising a child together.

  6. Loved this post. We have family near by and we do go on dates more often then probably other people do. However, we have done less date nights out then we did before. We are all about our kids. Its hard not to be since I’m with them 24/7. However, we do what you and your hubby do. Since our two children are older we pray around 7:30 pm and our kiddos have quite time in their rooms until they fall asleep. They usually color, create something crafty, read, or talk. We only started this once our older two got older so it could get easier for you as well. We cherish that time together. I usually give hubby a back rub, we drink wine, and watch a movie. The funny thing is that I always talk about kiddos when we do go out . We also really enjoy staying indoors instead of going out. We think its more fun.

  7. I really enjoyed your post. I’m not a mom, but I’ve did a short course over the last 10 weeks and all my extra time went into studying after work and on the weekends. My husband and I then had to work extra hard at spending quality time together/have a date night. We also stayed up a bit later to chat or watch something or grab a quick walk together after work just to connect again. I think it’s super important to connect with your husband and to make time for it, even when it seems impossible.

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