How I Successfully Date My Husband
Before I tell you how I successfully date my husband now that we have kids, it’s really important to understand where our relationship started and how it’s grown.
Every aspect hasn’t been successful or magnificent, but we have walked this journey together side by side.
If you grab nothing else from this, make sure you realize that this journey with your spouse is just that, a journey.
The Life of Dating Before Marriage and Kids
When you decided to jump out into the dating world, I would imagine you had a motivation and a purpose behind that action.
You wanted to find someone who could be your forever soulmate and best friend. You wanted to find someone who was like-minded that wanted the same things in life as you.
This person had to be likable, have a good personality, match the same quirkiness as you, and have your same sense of humor.
It’s likely that you looked for someone with the same faith as you, with the same goals and hobbies.
These are many of the same things I looked for when I first started dating. I was looking for someone who I would enjoy having a date night with for the rest of my life.
Someone who understood and accepted me for who I am, knowing that my best version of “me” would change with the seasons of life and that he would love me anyway.
And I found just that. As we have been navigating our way through parenthood together, our dating life has changed, but it is still alive.
Hopefully, you can find something here to help you keep yours alive, or revive what was once great!
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Dating Before Marriage
Dating before we were married was a blast. We were both working full-time, but the evenings and weekends were spent with each other. Although our dates were usually nothing fancy (which I think is a huge benefit to us now), we just enjoyed being together.
I shared my best advice on how to keep your marriage a priority after having kids, but my husband and I matched up really well for our ability to communicate with one another based on a variety of personality tests we participated in during our pre-marital counseling.
Dating Before Kids
Dating before kids was a walk in the park.
For us, being together outside takes away the distractions and busyness of everyday life- something I think all couples need.
It is so critical for the survival of any relationship to take away the distractions and learn how to be in each other’s presence.
Our dates were a bit more extravagant once we were married because we then had two incomes instead of one. (Yes, when we were dating before we were married, he paid for everything.) We would go on mini day trips, we would go to nicer restaurants, we just had more flexibility.
Dating After Having Kids
Figuring out how to date after kids has been a challenge.
BUT, making time for dates is SO IMPORTANT for you, your spouse, and your kids!
The foundation of your family is based on the relationship between you and your spouse.
Think about it in terms of building something. Before anything can go up, a solid foundation has to be laid.
That foundation must continually be cared for or everything that is built on top of it will eventually crumble.
I successfully date my husband because I want to absolutely, but I also do it for the well-being of my family. You owe it to your kids to do your best to make your marriage work.
What I have discovered is that dating after kids is a little trickier, but it is completely possible.
We have had to take our previous expectations for a date and change them to be more suitable to our current season of life. As with every season, this one is also temporary.
There will come a time where you’ll be able to go out and do all of the crazy and extravagant things you once did, but this one just may not be it for you.
We Have Date Nights In
I always like to be transparent, so I am going to lay some things out here.
This is one thing my husband and I need to work on. We put our kids down a little later than most, and so by the time everyone is settled, it may well be close to 9:30 pm.
Trying to plan something at that point always seems like a lot of work and so we usually end up just watching TV.
This is something I really want to improve on. So, as I am writing this to you, I am also writing this to myself.
Here are 10 simple “date nights in”!
- Movie and a Treat: This is probably one of the simplest to make happen. You can either rent a movie off of your television or cable provider, or you can purchase one in advance. Better yet, if you have Netflix or Hulu, there are some awesome options on there! Or, maybe you have a DVD or VHS that is a favorite you haven’t seen for a while. For the treat part, you can make something in advance, purchase something, or make the snack creation part of the date night. Fondue, whether cheese or my favorite, chocolate, can always be a lot of fun. This is a super simple and easy date night to plan, but it makes you be intentional about making your spouse a priority.
- Boardgame and a Treat: Much like the movie night date, this is super simple but reminds you to be intentional about finding time for you to spend with your significant other. Find a game you love or a new game to try and make sure it’s ready to go. This could be a board game, a video game, card game, etc. For the treat part, you can make something in advance, purchase something, or as I mentioned before, make the snack creation part of the date night- fondue is always fun. One of my all-time favorites if it’s warm outside, you could have a small bonfire and make s’mores. Yum!
- Wine and Cheese Charcuterie Board: If you enjoy wine, you can do a wine tasting night complete with a cheese board that provides a variety of different cheese pairings. I really know nothing about this because I don’t care for wine, but I have a lot of wine-loving friends who would totally enjoy this! This date night only involves a simple trip to the grocery store (and maybe a bit of research if you need to find some pairings).
- Paint Night: Maybe you want to add a fun activity to your wine night. Buy some canvas and paint, and you can do a DIY paint night in the comfort of your own home. You can attempt to paint the same thing, or challenge each other to paint something and see who does it best.
- Plan a Date Night: OK, so this may seem kind of funny, but how many times do you get a night out, and you spend way too much time trying to decide where to eat and what to do afterward. If you are more intentional about creating a great date night out, you will be able to better enjoy one another’s company and talk about more important things you may not often get a chance to discuss. Maybe dinner and shopping, or ice cream, or a movie. Or for the more adventurous spirits… skydiving? Be creative!
- Recreate a Meal from Your Favorite Place You’ve Traveled: If you’ve traveled anywhere together, chances are you have some favorite foods. Maybe it’s from here in the US, but if you’ve traveled abroad, you can have so much more fun with this.
- Chocolate Dip Plate: I LOVE CHOCOLATE! Like for real, love it. And how much better it gets when it becomes a dip. You would just need to buy bakers chocolate with a bit of oil that can be melted right on the stove, some fruit, marshmallows, pretzels, and anything else that sounds good dipped in chocolate. And voila, an easy date night.
- Create an At-Home Spa Night: Draw a warm bubble bath, light some candles and enjoy. Afterward, enjoy a nice foot massage given by your significant other. Add a massage and you’ve created a spa night at home.
- Have a Beer or Wine Flight At Home: If you have several different wines or beers you’d like to try buy them. Then, when the kids are in bed you can create a beer or wine flight and enjoy them from your living room.
- Have a Fire: If it’s cold and you have a fireplace, build a fire and enjoy the peace and calm. If it’s nice enough outside and you have a place you can do it, build a bonfire, and roast some s’mores.
I Choose To Date My Husband
As I mentioned above, I successfully date my husband after having kids because I choose to.
I know a lot of people think that having kids can ruin a marriage. But, that can’t be further from the truth.
The reality is that adults ruin marriage for a whole variety of reasons.
It is so important to realize and understand that your spouse needs attention just the same way they needed your attention before having kids. You still have to take the time to acknowledge them and make sure that you are spending quality time together.
Each of you is constantly changing. Ask questions that you “think” you know the answer to. Maybe their answer has changed. Ask them about their bucket list of things they want to do in life. Find out where they would visit if money didn’t matter. There are so many things you can learn about your spouse when you don’t have to worry about your kids.
We Have Date Nights Out
So although date nights in are something that I know we need to work on, we do at least try to go out on a regular basis.
I am a middle school teacher, turned to stay-at-home mom blogger.
I know what it’s like to come home from work absolutely drained and to think about putting even more energy into someone else can seem like a daunting task. There were plenty of days when I just wanted to come home and just spend time with my kids because I missed them.
I also know what it feels like to come home, hang out with my kids for a bit, and then head out to spend time with my husband.
Both things are energizing to me.
How to Make Date Night a Priority
As I just mentioned, I have lived the working mom’s life and the stay-at-home mom’s life.
Neither one is “easier” than the other.
Each one requires different things and takes a different type of energy.
No matter which part of life you are currently in, you MUST make date nights with your husband a priority. Put it on the calendar, commit to it, look forward to it, and then go out and enjoy one another.
I’ll admit, I am super picky about who watches our kids.
There are VERY few people who I trust to watch our kids.
It’s important that you find a couple of people who you completely trust because you and your husband need and deserve to have a break together. If you are in a new city, ask someone at your work who could give a reference. I also know that there are childcare services you can find online.
Not having childcare for your kids should NEVER be an excuse for not dating your husband.
Related Post: 12 Ways to Prioritize Marriage After Kids
Planning Date Night
So, who plans date night?
For us, we take turns.
Sometimes one person has something very specific in mind and other times we wing it on the fly. Both are fun, and either way, we are together.
I will say I am spoiled because he plans awesome dates! I love it when our anniversary rolls around because he plans an amazing date for us. It is something I look forward to every year.
Bottom line is, make sure you have some sort of plan before you leave your kids, or you’ll be staring at each other asking, “What do you want to do?”
Managing the Cost of Date Night
I have kept it no secret that our family operates on a rather tight budget. With me being at home with our kids, we have one income to meet all of our needs.
If there isn’t much of a budget for your date nights, that is totally OK.
Date night doesn’t have to be anything fancy.
We sometimes just enjoy going for a drive. It’s amazing how enjoyable driving can be when you don’t have a kid in the back screaming, “Mom, I have to pee!”
Another way we go out on dates is by using gift cards. We use the gift cards that we are given for birthdays and holidays for date nights.
Dating Your Husband is a MUST!
The bottom line is this…
I date my husband because I CHOOSE TO.
That really is it. I love him. I want to spend time with him.
My kids need us to spend time with each other. We need to always be mindful of the foundation of our family.
Our marriage was based on a commitment to always love each other. And part of loving each other is to do life together.
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