Why Date Night Can Make You A Better ParentChaunie Brusie
Last weekend, my sister was looking for some extra cash and offered to babysit our three children.
“Hey, my sister wants to babysit,” I said to my husband as I sorted through the day’s mail. “Want to go out on a date with me?”
He looked at me and shrugged noncommittally. “Where would we even go?” he asked.
Suddenly, the prospect of date night sounded suspiciously like more work for me. I’d have to arrange the babysitting, pick a place to go, (dinner and a movie? again?) and convince my husband that going out would be fun. All the while we were thinking of the money it was costing us to just eat a meal that we could have cooked better at home.
And with that, date night was dead before it even started.
My husband and I don’t go out on a lot of dates. Money is a big factor in that, as is the fact that we have three children five and under. Time + energy seem to be a little short by the time the weekend rolls around and, many times, going out or even planning an at-home date night just doesn’t seem worth the effort.
After years of practice, I can justify our lack of date nights pretty well:
We are saving loads of money! Just think how expensive a sitter, dinner out, and movie would be!
Who needs to go out to have fun? We can enjoy each other’s company right here at home!
The kids are growing so fast and we need to be a family together while they still like hanging out with us!
But on Sunday, when I looked over at my husband scrolling aimlessly on his phone and texted back my sister to kindly pass on her offer (did I really pass up a babysitter asking me to babysit??), I realized just how pathetic we really were.
But beyond our patheticness, it also hit me that–gasp–maybe by being too lazy to even go out on a date, we weren’t just losing the opportunity to eat a real meal without interruptions, but could it be possible that we were also being…
After all, I’m sure you’ve heard the old adage that goes something like, “The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother,” right?
I also think that most of us agree with that sentiment, right?
So if I really believe that, could it also be true that my husband is not being the best father he can be and I’m not being the best mother I can be if we aren’t investing in our relationship as husband and wife?
I wonder if my sister is free this weekend?
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Image via Angelo González/Flickr