Once you get a few years into your relationship, date night is everything. Add some kids into the mix, and you will be desperate to spend some one-on-one time with your mate without small children screaming in the background. If you want to make the most of long-awaited date night, don’t dare bring these 10 topics to the table.
Although this is a “don’t” list, I am a huge advocate for honesty in a relationship. I’m also an advocate for knowing when to shut up and have a good time. If you want to breathe some life back into your union, take one night to focus on what brought you together in the first place — and avoid these conversation killers like the plague:
1. In-law drama
The appetizer course is not the time to air your grievances about your mother-in-law. Even if she never volunteers to babysit, criticizes your cooking or calls your husband too often, resist the urge to bitch by stuffing more food in your mouth.
2. Having another baby
When, oh when, will it ever be the right time to plan for baby number two? Your biological clock is a-tickin’. One thing’s for sure — it’s not while you peruse the wine list at a five-star restaurant.
3. How much the babysitter is charging
Knowing that your babysitter is charging you $15 an hour to watch your kids while they sleep will not make your $30 Beef Wellington any more delicious.
4. Money troubles
Speaking of money, a relaxing night of dinner and a movie will be ruined when you hash out how you’re going to balance your car payment, mortgage, after-school care and dance classes. Save that Debbie Downer discussion for an already-excruciating Monday night.
5. Playgroup gossip
It should go without saying that the point of date night is to reconnect and remember the early dating days — not to dish on your hurt feelings when another mom purposely excluded you for a play date.
6. Problems with the kids
It’s so easy to want to dissect every kid-related problem as soon as you have a second to think, but fight this temptation. Stay-at-home mom Kathryn Wales writes for Verily Magazine that she sticks to a “no kid-talk” date night rule to spark nostalgia from the pre-baby days.
7. Religion and politics
Unless you and your spouse see eye-to-eye on all vital topics (very unlikely if you are not clones), don’t tank a good dinner by arguing about the latest news scandal. Bantering until midnight about righteous causes may have been cute in your college days, but remember — someone’s still got to pay the babysitter.
8. The last fight you had
A rare night out in public is not the time to bring up your husband’s video game addiction again. While it’s never a good idea to suppress long-standing resentment, cutting remarks made in front of the waiter are just sad.
9. Upgrades on the house
If you must bring up retiling the bathroom on date night, you’re going to have to order coffee with dessert. Yawn.
10. Work stress
Your partner is the one person you can safely vent to about your terrible boss, but this subject is a big fat “nope” on a romantic date. Take the sage advice of Belinda Martin, married for 30 years: “One of the things you never do on date night is talk about negative things and business. What’s a date night if you don’t feel a connection during the date? There is nothing more disappointing than a date that reminds you how much you’re not connected. You will wish you never went on the date to see how far apart you are.”
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