After weeks of feeling frustrated about my husband not taking me out on dates, I decided to do something about it. My problem was that I didn’t quite know how to approach it without nagging him, while also clearly communicating the depth of my feelings. I wanted him to know that date night is important to me. I took some time to think it through and found a way to handle it that went over very well!
Quality time is my primary love language. It means the world to me when my husband takes the time out to be with me, even if it’s a quick coffee date to our favorite café. My husband knows that about me. However, I took for granted that we all need quick reminders about these kinds of things every now and again.
Because he knows what my love language is, I expected him to simply carry it out without hesitation (kind of like a, “You know it, so go do it!” approach). The issue with that is I’m trying to teach him how to speak my language. That means I have the tutorials and materials he needs to learn how to speak it fluently. Together, with practice on both of our ends, we can reach a common ground. This required input from me on what I needed from him but felt like I was missing. I had to get crystal clear about what my needs were and then present it in a way he could receive.
Then, I Asked for His Help.
Men like to fix things. If there’s a problem, they want to solve it. I saw our lack of quality time as a problem and asked him to help me fix it. Asking for his input allowed us to have a good talk about what we both can do to connect on a regular basis. This approach was far less antagonistic than me keeping the spotlight on him and what he wasn’t doing. Truth be told, a healthy marriage and active date life require effort from both parties. It can’t simply come from one or the other (unless you both establish that that’s what works for you).
Next, I Took the Guess Work Out.
I manage our social calendar. In between running errands on the weekends and all of the other things busy families tend to do – scheduling a regular date night got lost in the shuffle. To help take the guess work out of things, I suggested that we schedule our monthly date nights at the start of each month and then take turns planning. That’s only six dates per person to get us through an entire year! We’re both excited to try this method out. We also have to make an effort to spend a few minutes of uninterrupted time together each day to connect with one another.
Finally, I Changed the Focus.
I was talking to a friend who is also a relationship coach and she said something that really stayed with me. She pointed out how easy it is for us to focus on that ONE THING our spouse may be lacking. Then we overlook all of the other things they do to show how much they love us
That quietly convicted my heart. I realized that I had, in fact, been focusing on what he wasn’t doing and overlooking his other efforts. Why? Simply because they didn’t come packaged the way I wanted them to. Since that day, I’ve been keeping a “love log” of the little things my husband does to show his love and appreciation for me.
By keeping those things in front of mind, it helps me maintain the right perspective when I start to think he’s not doing enough. It has also inspired me to step my game up and make sure I’m doing the things he needs, wants, and desires from me as well.
Date night is an important piece of creating a happier climate in every marriage. Whether it’s playing board games at home or dressing up to see a play, both of you have to take part in keeping the connection between you alive and well. I’m happy to have shifted my focus a bit in this area and solve the date night dilemma.