You’ve done it. You’ve arranged for a babysitter for your little ones. You’ve synchronized your hectic work schedules and you’re about to go on the coveted ‘date night’. Maybe it has been weeks since the stars aligned and you could manage this little luxury or maybe you have a standing date. Either way, you are looking forward to some time alone with your spouse. You reach the restaurant feeling proud that your best outfit still fits and as you peruse the menu it occurs to you that your littlest one said something hilarious this morning. You hold back, though. This night is supposed to be about adult conversation and a reprieve from all things’ family. Right? Relax, it is OK to talk about your kids on date night.
We’ve set an unnatural standard for ourselves when it comes to date night and it’s time we relaxed a little. Maybe the bedtime routine has been rough, lately. Maybe the baby delights in his sleep deprivation tactics. It is fine to take some quiet time to discuss these issues over a meal you didn’t prepare and more importantly, one you won’t be cleaning up after. You might even have the time and energy to form a plan of action to combat some of the issues keeping you up at night.
Don’t forget about the moments you may have missed as you tried to manage your many responsibilities. Now is your time to relive them with the only other person in the world who could appreciate them the way you do. Did your spouse miss the school play? Fill him in on how painfully adorable it is to watch kindergartners take the stage. Did mom miss the final soccer match? Let her know that your little one cheered as hard for the winning team as any of the opposing players.
This is your time and you should use it to talk about whatever makes you happy. Don’t try to force yourselves to avoid the one topic that unites you. Use this date night to laugh with each other over the triumphs and commiserate about the tough stuff. Your children will thank you when you arrive home refreshed and with renewed energy to take on day to day life.