When money is tight, parents usually put themselves last. With a limited amount of funds in the budget, it’s important to take care of groceries and kids and anything else that seems like a “need” instead of a “want.” The date night is often the first thing to get axed.
It's normal for couples to push ‘unnecessary' events to the side. But it's very important for couples to find the time and money for a date. Here’s why:
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You Deserve Some Quiet Time to Chat
I don’t know about you, but I can’t have a normal discussion with my husband unless it’s at six in the morning or 10 at night. Why? Well, the kids of course. The only time we can have a quiet conversation is when our kids are asleep.
All couples deserve a quiet time to chat, without laundry calling their names or their phones ringing.
When you set aside time to have a date night, you can do just that.
It might sound boring, but one of my favorite types of date nights is to have a budget meeting. When I take an hour to get on the same financial page as my husband, I feel much closer to him. Sometimes date night is the only time when we can discuss important topics like our finances.
You Remember What It Was Like When You Were Dating
Yep, I know you love your spouse, but remember when you fell in love? Wasn't it great? And oh-so romantic. Remember when you couldn’t wait to see him or her again, or for the phone to ring? Ah – young love.
I know relationships can’t always stay the way they were at the beginning. After all, that before you had bills and a mortgage. It was before someone forgot to pay the water bill or they spent more money than they should have.
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When you go out on a date, it can remind you of those early days when you shared meals and bonded like there was no one else in the world. It can also give you time together to work through any issues you may have, and vow to get better together.
You Finally Put Your Relationship First Again
More often than not, my kids come first. If I’m talking to my husband and one of my kids starts crying, I will stop the conversation to take care of my kid. My husband and I understand that we have to tend to our children above anything else. I’m sure that will change as they grow older and become self-sufficient, but for now, it’s what we do.
On a date night, though, we put our relationship first. We forget about diapers, bath time, and bedtime stories.
It's just for us. It's time to shut the rest of the world out for an hour or two.
You Can Bond Over Good Food or a Shared Experience
My parents recently visited me in New York City, and they went to see a Broadway show. My mom loves Broadway shows as much as I do, and she was so thrilled and excited. They had a wonderful time, and couldn’t stop talking about how nice it was to just take an Uber into the city and do something different.
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Even after nearly 35 years of marriage, the two of them enjoyed a new, shared experience. Sometimes, grabbing a quick dinner out really isn’t enough to connect – especially if you’re working extra hard or are under a lot of stress.
So after a few years – or decades – of being together, all couples may benefit from experiencing something new together, whether it’s a movie, an interesting restaurant, a new view on a hike, or – as in my parents’ case – an amazing Broadway show.
Sometimes being nerdy and creating a new budget together or making concrete goals for the future can be a positive experience, too.
Ultimately, many people think that talking about money can spoil the romance. However, I can tell you that after years of being together and having kids, taking the time to sit down, make a budget, and plan to spend money on a date together is a great way to work together on your relationship and your finances.
Plus, when your budget meeting is done, you’ll have a date night to look forward to and permission to spend money, thanks to your budget – and it can help bring the two of you closer together.