In February, we asked you how you and your partner manage to make time for each other. While many people indicated that they simply don’t have any time alone, many others managed to squeeze in some “alone” time. Here’s what some of you shared.
When our child is napping or after he/she goes to bed at night, we use this time to relax together and to catch up with each other.
A babysitter/relative/friend takes care of our child at a given time and on a given day every week so we can go out together or be alone together at home.
- We occasionally spend evenings at a local club or have friends over (though it is not "us" time).
- We ask our parents to take the children for a few hours but, then, as the mother/wife, I use that time to do chores or just to take a shower.
- When we have finances available for a date, a family member babysits.
- We sometimes send the kids for a nap during the day and tell them that mommy and daddy need to have some quiet time alone. We let them know that we will all do something fun together later when we all wake up.
- When the work is done.
- Go for walks; we now have teenagers.
- Take advantage of rare visits from grandparents who babysit.
- When our children go to bed, we usually lie in bed together, but generally fall asleep.
- It's a problem. Our son doesn't often get to sleep before my husband, exhausted after a long day of work, is ready to go to sleep. Long working hours, even overtime, prevent him from taking regular time off during the week. We are trying harder now, knowing that we could lose our relationship if we don't! We just had our first 4-day trip away in 3 1/2 years, thanks to relatives and friends who babysat. It was great!
- When the kids are at school and we are home (my husband is a shift worker which makes it harder).
- Plan far in advance.
Here's what some of our experts have to say:
All parents know how challenging it can be to spend quality time with their partner. To help, the experts at Invest in Kids have assembled some tried and true strategies to share with you:
- Book regular dates and arrange babysitters. Recognize how important it is to commit to these “dates” and do not feel guilty about it. Make a mid-week date, even if it means just going out for coffee. Don’t just live for the weekend.
- Schedule time with your partner in your calendar. This fills up your day-timer so other things cannot be booked.
- Drive to work together whenever you can.
- Allow your children to occupy themselves. Do spend lots of time with them, but it is important that they learn how to amuse themselves and not rely exclusively on you for entertainment.
- Nap when your child does. If you and your partner are on very different schedules, this can help you stay awake later to catch up with your partner.
- Take an evening class together. Learning together, sharing a common interest and escaping the everyday routine create opportunities for bonding.
- Plan and cook a meal together.
- Go for a walk with your youngster (who hopefully will fall asleep in the stroller) so you can have some adult time.
- Arrange a weekend exchange with another family who has kids – negotiate one weekend when their kids are with you, and the other weekend, when your kids are with them.