Guest Author - Lisa Polovin Pinkus
Articles and books everywhere tell us that all aspects of a woman’s life changes when she becomes a mother. Her relationship with her spouse is no exception. This relationship deserves special attention throughout the years of motherhood and should be nurtured, tended to, and regarded as highly important.
Exhaustion, time constraints, and demands from children make it difficult to find time alone together. Your relationship, however, will have an impact on your children so devoting time to each other will benefit your entire family.
In-house dates have become even more popular in years of difficult financial times. There are so many things you can do once your children are asleep for the night. Watch a movie, cook dinner together, or sit on the patio with a cup of tea. Devote yourself to this time and turn off all cell phones and avoid checking your computer “for just a sec” before the date starts.
Other alternatives to quiet time together include starting a babysitting co-op with close friends who have children around the same ages as yours. For many couples, the cost of childcare prohibits them from going out as often as they’d like. When you’re part of a co-op, you take turns watching the children, allowing the other couple(s) to go out for the night. We tend to feel less guilty spending money on a dinner out when we don’t have to pay the high cost of a sitter as well.
The reverse can also work. Spend your money on a sitter and find a no-cost or low cost date you and your husband will enjoy. Listen to music at a local coffee house; go for a hike, a bike ride or sit on a bench by the lake; go to a matinee, pack a picnic, or have the sitter take the children to the park and you stay home. Do something off the wall – go swinging in the park, visit open houses, or go to a local resort and sit in the lounge.
Family dates can also allow you and your spouse to share quality time with your children. Invite your children to join you for a late night movie. Watch for low hotel rates and deals and arrange for a stay-cation. Even if it is only a few blocks from home, a hotel can make a night special and grand.
Think hard. Be committed and make sure you devote time to your marriage or partnership.