Dear Parents… Don’t Let Date Nights Be A Thing of The Past!!!

datenight-after-kids

Disclaimer: It is not a crime for parents of toddlers or older kids to step out without kids every once in a while. In fact, if planned well, it is very important to do so.

My wife went through post partum depression after she gave birth to our twins several years ago. She would stay up all night long crying and talking to herself things like “God! I can’t handle twins”. More than anything she was just overwhelmed.

I can confidently say that the thing that got her out of depression is when we started to go out on date nights once in a while. As a couple living by ourselves, it was important to ensure we had the best help who the babies were comfortable with and would volunteer to be with the babies through the night.

I have to say we started to step out only once their sleep and feeding pattern was well set, say about 6-7 months after they were born.

Till the kids were 1.5 years old, the plans mostly included things like a movie at the nearest cinema or dinner at a nearby restaurant. We ensured that we would always go to a restaurant we haven’t tried before to add to the excitement. Once the kids turned 1.5 and slept through the night, we would go on a bar night.

For dads reading this, we need to get one thing straight. A date night post kids belongs 100% to the wife. She needs it the most and we have to really go out of the way to help facilitate it. Let her do the research on and pick the restaurant or bar to go to. She has to plan a thousand things before stepping out. It is almost suicidal for the dad to say “Come on hurry up, we’re getting late”.

romantic-date-nightIts quite normal for a date nights to go flop just because the baby threw up or got fever just when you guys were ready and all set to go out. It happened to us all the time. Looking back, I realize it was very insensitive of me to be upset when the wife said we cannot go tonight. Instead of being upset, the father could order in food, set up the table for at-home date night while she comforts and puts the baby to sleep.

Lastly, I want to say as important as it is for parents to go out on date nights, it is equally important to train the kids and prepare them. I know several parents who kept thinking their babies are too little for them to leave them alone at night despite help at home. Little did they knew their babies would turn 5 or more and still not let them go out at night because they are just not used to it.

We now live with my parents. My kids, now 7, know that there are nights on weekends when mumma and pappa will go out without them. They settle into their room and sleep on time. They just need to know grandparents are home. The only challenge that we need to deal with is when they wake up full of energy at 7 am next morning 🙂

Image courtesy – http://www.dirtyandthirty.com 

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