Date Night...You're Doing It Wrong!10/19/2014
Recently my brother-in-law (BIL) sent this link to my sister-in-law (SIL) on Facebook. It’s an article from Huffington Post on the differences between dates and getting ready for them while being a non-parent and a parent. Personally, I’m not a fan of articles like this. I’ve written before in my Myths I HATE About Being a SAHM & One Truth, how I hate that SAHM’s, hell moms and parents in general get a bad rap once we have kids. Like once we give birth all the sudden we forget that we are women, partners and spouses.
Like anything in life I believe there are multiple sides to every story. I’m not saying that this article is flat out bullshit lying but it’s definitely only telling one side. I’m sure there are moms and parents out there that live in situations like this. Me personally, I don’t.
First off, I don’t have a baby sitter. Well I do but I try to not think of my mother-in-law (MIL) as a baby sitter. She’s my kid’s grandparent and she loves watching them for us if we need a break. So I don’t have to pay anyone to watch my little ones while I go out. While I’m sure it sucks to pay a baby sitter (I think the average rate is $10/hr) is it really that much of a pain to fork over the money for a little bit of sanity time with my husband? Nope. I’d gladly pay for ten hours of baby sitting and sit in the car somewhere with my husband just to have some free time away.
Secondly, my kids love their grandmother so they are more than happy to go to her house while we have a date night. The other option we do is we will pick a super late movie then she will come over and just sit on the couch and relax while the kids are already in bed. I think if your kids are clinging to your leg as you are walking out of the door for a date then maybe you need to reevaluate your baby sitter. Do your kids like your baby sitter? Sure, my kids have cried and screamed when I’ve left but guess what…they lived! Walk out of the house, get in the car and drive away. I’m sure the baby sitter or whomever is watching your kids will call you if it gets to a point of no return. Usually once we are out of the driveway and the kids can’t see our car they calm down and go back to life as normal. And that’s worst case scenario.
Third, like I said earlier, just because I’m a mom doesn’t mean that I forgot I’m a woman. If you know you are going to have a date night, plan ahead. Planning is a mom’s and a parent’s best friend. If I know we are going to leave around 7 or 8 PM for a date I plan my day around it. What needs to be done? What needs to be accomplished so I can get ready? Usually I have a roundabout idea of what I want to wear so I make sure I have it already clean or it’s in the laundry first thing in the morning to prep. Those two or so hours that the kids are napping in the afternoon. Yup, that’s shower, makeup, hair time. Who cares if I’m all gussied at 3 o’clock in the afternoon…I’m ready, right? Heck these days my oldest will tell me “oh mommy, you look so pretty!” that’s enough motivation for me. Again, I’m sure there are parents who don’t have this luxury but with enough planning anything is possible. Oh, and there are these AWESOME inventions called baby gates! The one in our hall between our bedrooms keeps me sane. I can keep an eye on the kids and get ready…GASP…WHAT?
Overall, I think articles like this might appeal to some people, heck, they can even be funny to read but they aren’t everyone’s reality. What works for me might not work for you and vice versa but let’s be honest and share all the sides and not just the one that makes moms look like homeless drones who don’t care about themselves once they have kids. Get out, enjoy life and have a date. Even if it’s once every six months it’s a whole lot better than nothing at all…right?
If you have any tips on how you get ready for a date night without losing your mind or your kids going nuts I’d love to hear them! They might help some of those moms out there who seem to be having a harder time with date nights than I am.