Keeping the spark alive isn’t easy when you’re married with kids. Once we become parents, date nights can slow to a trickle (or a standstill) and moments of romantic spontaneity require us to do some um…. planning.
As a mom of triplets, I know all too well how easy it is to let your relationship take a back seat to the responsibilities of parenting, but I also know that I’m a much happier person and mom when my husband and I make our love and our relationship a priority. With three kids and several years of marriage under my belt, I know a thing or two about re-igniting the passion in my relationship – and with these simple tips, you can too!
Schedule time for romance: When you’re a parent, you can’t wait for life to give you back your date nights - because it won’t. Or sit around and wait for your partner to take the initiative and grow resentful when they don’t. Make the plans yourself and make a habit of planning dates with your partner the same way you make a habit of scheduling hair appointments and medical appointments. Why? Because it’s that important.
Daytime is the right time: Connecting with your spouse or partner doesn’t just have to be at night (although that’s nice too). A lunch date is a great way to spend time with your partner without the added complication or expense of having to find a sitter. Plus, periodically meeting up with your sweetheart for lunch will add some sparkle to your day!
The couple that plays together stays together: I learned this secret a few years back sharing your partner’s interest is good for your relationship! My husband is a huge sports fan and I realized that I could either spend the rest of my life trying to tear him away from sports (which wasn’t going to work) or I could learn to appreciate it. Now we regularly go to Knicks games and boxing events. By sharing his hobbies, not only have I learned something new, but we have more things to talk about and that has brought us closer together.
Get more face time: Why just call your spouse when you can have a face-to-face using Face Time, Skype, or Google Hangout. As you’re going through your day, call your spouse just to say “hello.” Looking at a person in the face and into their eyes (even if through a screen) will help to keep you close and more connected.
Take a vacation (or two) without the kids: This is hard for most parents, but it is necessary. When my kids were infants I remember saying to a mommy friend that I would never go on vacation without my kids. “Where I go. They go.” Two years later I was singing a different tune and we planned our first vacation without the kids. We went to hotel nearby and stayed for the weekend. It was only a few miles away and we didn’t stay for very long, but it was enough time and for us to enjoy ourselves, and each other.
It’s all about the little things: Birthdays and holidays give us the opportunity to make grand gestures to the ones we love, but it’s the day-to-day moments that say how we feel. On Sundays my husband always gets me a cup of coffee from my favorite café because he knows I like it (and that I’m tired). Small acts of kindness lets our loved ones know that we care, we’re paying attention and that we’re still listening. So do something kind for your hubby or for wife that makes their day a little bit better or a little bit easier. It will go a long way in keeping your family strong, your friendship strong and your love strong.
Notoya Green is an on-air parenting expert and mother of three-year-old triplets. A former law attorney, Notoya put her law career on hold to become a stay-at-home mom to care full-time for her children. She now shares her experiences at Triplets in Tribeca.