Relationships often take a backseat after a baby comes along. Get back on track with our advice for new parents
Ok, so we know it’s almost a post-baby relationship cliché – the date night. But, there’s genuinely a lot to be said for the idea of booking in quality time with your partner.
Date nights let you hold onto some normality and familiarity in your new life as parents. Spending quality time together eases stress and keeps the focus on you both being a team in this new family unit.
Pick the right date
The key is making the time together manageable, so you can maintain it.
‘Don’t insist on being extravagant all the time – it’s supposed to be easy and accessible rather than stressful,’ says relationship coach Sam Owen.
‘A candle-lit meal out or at home can be great, as well as things that involve laughter, communication and team work such as bowling, pub quizzes or a stroll in the park.’
Balance the old and new by doing things you used to love before you became parents as well as surprising each other with new experiences.
Make the effort
Getting ready to go out is sometimes even more fun than the going out itself, so enjoy making an effort.
Feeling that you look your best is good for your self-esteem.
‘No matter how much you’re yourself with your partner, it’s still nice to look at one another every so often and feel your heart skip a beat,’ says Sam. ‘Plus, feeling that you look your best is good for your self-esteem.’
Getting out of those puree-stained joggers is also a way of you leaving mum mode for just a little while.
Consider talking points
Some advise keeping dirty nappy and night feed talk off limits, but is that realistic?
‘You and your partner create your own rules for what you do and don’t like in your relationship,’ says Sam.
‘If you want to keep a topic off the table during a date night, then fine. If he brings it up, light-heartedly request a subject change and tell him you’d rather not discuss that because you just want to have a romantic evening with him.'
And let him know he can say the same to you.
Include your baby
This may not be everyone’s cup of tea but some parents love the idea of including their baby in their quality couple time.
‘Go to a park or have a meal at a family-friendly restaurant where your baby can sit in a highchair or pram,’ says Sam.
‘Also make the most of times your baby’s asleep – you don’t have to always book a babysitter. But it’s still important to make dates for just the two of you.’