Dating Your Spouse
Dating your spouse, sounds so simple right? I mean that's how you BEGAN your relationship in the first place, by DATING! But for some reason, perhaps out of familiarity, many of us will find this part of our relationship slowly slipping away over the years. Blame it on busy schedules, kids, work, or just getting older, many struggle to find the time and energy to date their spouse again.
And let's face it, if you've been married for any amount of time over a year, the honeymoon period is over. The excitement of your wedding day, the presents, the congratulations, the honeymoon, they are long over. And you can sometimes be left feeling like your dating relationship is too.
But we must learn to evolve with our relationships as they evolve. Just because the "honeymoon" period is over does not mean that your relationship is. And just because you are married it does not mean that you stop learning, growing and discovering with your spouse! Sometimes I like to think of marriage as a fine wine, something that gets better with age. And as the years turn, so do the characteristics of the wine and your marriage. Evolve with your spouse and your relationship will flourish!
Ok ok, back to dating your spouse. I have found that Dave and I have often struggled in this area. As we have had preconceived notions of what a date should look like. And I'll be the first to admit that I always thought of a date as some fancy dinner out, getting dressed up and spending lots of money. And while that does sound like an AWESOME date, it's just not realistic for every day life. Instead we've had to learn how to date another other in affordable and realistic ways. Whether that's making breakfast at home, going out to brunch, a picnic in the park, fondue and a movie or just hanging out on the couch at home, we've had to work at making dedicated times for just us. And these aren't just times to "hang out" but intentional times of learning about each other.
That sounds like a tall order huh?! Well not to worry, there are lots of people out there who have already done the thinking for you (and me!) Originally for this post I was going to make up a list of fun date nights to try out with your spouse. But instead of reinventing the wheel I searched around Pinterest and found that MANY people have already blogged about this very thing! I've compiled a few of my favorite ideas, but I would encourage you to take a peek for yourself and see if anything sparks inspiration for you!
-- Date Jar (love this idea, filled with affordable and pricey dating ideas!)
-- Penny Dates (affordable but very meaningful date ideas!)
-- At Home Date Ideas (good for moms and dads who may not be able to get out of the house often)
Ultimately the most important reason to date your spouse is so that you continue to know the person that your spouse is becoming! Just because you are married doesn't mean that you know everything there is to know about each other! It takes time and commitment, but dating your spouse is such an important part of the marriage experience. And remember it doesn't take tons of money to date your spouse, but rather dedicated and private time just for the two of you!
For those of you who have been married for a bit, do you have any tips to share on how to keep your dating life alive? What have been some of your favorite dates with your spouse? How has your spouse dated you over the years? I'd love to hear!