One of the most popular posts I’ve written to date on ASmithBlog is about date nights. A few months ago on my Facebook page I asked my followers if I were to create a free resource to give away on my blog that would help their marriage most at that time, what would it be.
The overwhelming response was a resource to help them have consistent date nights with their spouses. That led to me creating Date Night in a Box: 12 Plug-and-Play Ideas to Connect with Your Wife this Weekend.
Lessons on dating in marriage
Through the interaction with couples on Facebook, those who downloaded Date Night in a Box, those who read my blog, and my own experience I’ve learned some things about dating in marriage.
The first thing I’ve learned is not everybody does it, although most couples think it can be a good thing for their marriage. Even in our relationship, after I’ve kind of become the “date night guy” through creating so much content and facilitating so many conversations around it, my wife and I miss date night too.
Still learning about dating in marriage
Just recently, our marriage has had some challenges. During one conversation with my wife, she pointed out that we had not gone on a date for a few weeks. There was a direct correlation in how our relationship was going with how our dating life was going.
You would think we would have learned our lesson as that was one of the big “ahas” that lead to us getting back to dating, and creating resources to help other couples do the same.
But we found ourselves not dating, although we knew we should be. I’ve determined there are at least 3 reasons not to date your spouse, even when you know you should.
- Priorities out of order. One of the biggest reasons we weren’t dating early in our marriage is because it wasn’t a priority. We didn’t realize how important dating was to our marriage’s well-being, and we made other things more important. Our kids’ activities, work, and other stuff took precedence.
- Life happens. During our stretch of not dating, a lot of stuff was going on. We were out of town for two separate weeks in October. If you’ve ever been out of town for a week, let alone two, you can imagine all the “life” that happened to us. That was definitely the case for us. One positive to take away from our experience is we dated the entire time we were on those trips. We just didn’t continue when we returned home.
- You give yourself an out. Sometimes there is nothing in the way of dating except you. You give yourself an out. This could be that you are tired, don’t have a sitter, or are even mad at each other. Many couples leave the option of not dating open. Just like in marriage where you have to burn all bridges and boats that lead away from the marriage, the same applies when it comes to dating. We didn’t do this. We got complacent and not going on a date became so easy, we didn’t even realize we hadn’t gone on a date.
Instead of finding or allowing reasons not to date your spouse, I encourage you to find as many reasons and as many ways to date your spouse. Dating is a fundamental part of your relationship. It’s what led to you being married, and may ultimately help you stay married.