Marriage

Date Night Rules

I loved what Amberly and Charlene wrote about what defines a date night to them and their marriage. It made me really think about what defines a date night to me and to my marriage.

I think if you asked me a few years ago, I would have said it’s any time that we’re together, but frankly when you don’t have kids, that means date night is every night, which obviously isn’t true! Defining date nights have without a doubt enhanced our relationship, 100%!

When I really stopped to think about what defines a date night to our marriage it’s that ONE part of the date has to involve eye contact with conversation. Does that make sense? For example, if we just wanted to go to a movie, that isn’t a date night because we aren’t having a conversation or making eye contact BUT if we did a movie AND dinner that’s a date night because we’d be able to sit and have a conversation with each other. Another example, if we were to just cuddle up with each other and watch Netflix that is NOT a date night but if we were playing a board game at home that allowed us to actually talk and make eye contact then that would be a date night.

Although, we don’t have children yet, I’d also add that when we have kids, a date night will consist of one part of the date has to be child-free. Oh sure, we can have dinner with the kids for date night BUT they’ll have to be in bed or with a babysitter for the second part because intentional time without kids is also important to marriage.

Of course, there are less important “rules” to what makes a date night for me as well, one of those is dressing up. That doesn’t necessarily mean fancy gowns and suits BUT that does mean wearing a jersey for a baseball game or maybe wearing a nice summer dress for me or khakis for him to go out for milkshakes on a summer date night. Those are two things we don’t normally wear in our everyday. The second less important “rule” for date night is we have to have FUN! Duh. This isn’t always obvious, because like everything else when things are scheduled you can get into a rut and end up doing the same things every week or month, but making it a rule that it has to be fun or equally enjoyable means that weekly grocery shopping isn’t a date night, or doing errands is NOT a date night.

Date night shouldn’t stop because you’re married. Date night when you’re married should be a time of reflecting, reconnecting and letting loose a little bit to keep your marriage awesome.

So tell me, what are your date night rules? What are your favourite date nights to have with your spouse? 

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17 thoughts on “Date Night Rules

  1. We don’t often get “date nights” due to my crazy work schedule. It’s usually a “date morning” for us, where we visit the zoo early in the day and then just spend the rest of the afternoon chilling at home. Or we will go see a movie on the first showing of the day so that we are some of the only people in the theatre. Really, all our “date” activities revolve around trying to avoid crowds as much as possible. haha!

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    1. Haha, if I had my way I’d have most of our date nights away from people and crowds too. Luckily, we usually have a good mix to keep us both happy.

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  2. Date nights are something I look forward to. My husband and I can have a conversation without getting interrupted. We talk only about us and not our children as we are constantly talking and thinking about them. It is just “our” time when we are on a date.
    He can focus on me and I on him. This is where we really talk about how we are growing, changing, and maturing. I can keep up with the changes and challenges that he is facing and my husband can reciprocate that too.
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  3. I think it’s kind of tough to define a ‘date night’ when there aren’t kids in the picture. K and I work together, have lunch together, spend our evenings at home together… but those aren’t dates, lol. Sometimes we go to dinner but I still wouldn’t necessarily call that a date. For us, a date night is something that’s a little out of the ordinary that we’ve planned in advance and we’re making preparations for (putt-putting, a movie and dinner, a trip to a new ice cream place), verses just deciding we’re hungry and popping out to dinner 🙂

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    1. I totally thought of you when I was writing this, since I was curious how you define date nights now that you work and live with your husband. I think it’s a great definition of what a date night is for you and your marriage. I think that was how I used to definite date night BUT I find we’re more spontaneous people so really then we’d only take like 4 date nights a year instead of the 25 to 30 date nights that we ACTUALLY have.

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  4. When we didn’t have kids, I used to view every night as date night, and consequently, our “date nights” were the same thing that we did every night, nothing special. That’s why now I say that it’s INTENTIONAL time together when things are different than your normal (you get out and do something fun, your phones aren’t allowed, etc.)

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    1. I LOVE your new definition of what a date night is, because you’re right date nights don’t become special if you’re just defining them by any time your with your spouse.

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    1. I think it’s great that you can at least define what a date night is, even if it’s just errands together without Caleb! I think the definition part is pretty key to making them sucessful.

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  5. We have chosen a couple of restaurants to be “special” places, where neither of us will eat without the other. We don’t have kids, either, but I agree that it’s very important to couples to spend time without kids and not let their marriage die. The kids will be affected if their parents are miserable.

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  6. Thanks for the shout out! And yes I like your rules. I especially like your “dress up” rule! I would normally say that loungewear or pajamas would not be okay for date night UNLESS you’re having some kind of pajama-themed date so the pajamas is how you “dress up.” Like for Amberly’s Pizza, Popcorn, and Pajamas date night etc. I just think it’s fun and sends a good message when you put a little thought into what you wear for a date.

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    1. I totally agree – putting thought into what you wear for a date is something you would’ve done if you were dating, why should it stop when you’re married?

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  7. oh this is so great to consciously think about these! we always require that our phones go away when we are on a date. for us, we don’t feel like it’s a date when our daughter is involved so we wait until she goes to bed and then have a nice meal together or go out sometimes too. great point also that you both must be ENGAGED (as opposed to simply watching netflix or a movie) 🙂

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    1. The phones go away on our date too! It’s been our rule since we were dating – we used to say the first person to touch their phone had to pay. Of course now that we both share the same money that doesn’t have the same effect. And of course I like to take date night photos if it’s for a blog post but The Mister understands.

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