Sex in San Diego: Celebrating “date night”

by on May 17, 2012 · 4 comments

in Culture, San Diego, Sex in San Diego

by Emilie Astolat

from Kevin Dooley on Flickr

People who think they’ve never taken their loved-one for granted, no matter how many years have passed, should think again. I’m sorry, but there are no ifs, ands or buts about it. And if you’re one of those people, I suggest you ask said loved-one for their opinion. You just might be surprised.

As I think about my own relationship, I realize I have a lot to be grateful about. We share a happy home, a child, security, a sense of humor, family (like it lump it), tribulations, joys, decisions, love and the list goes on and on. There isn’t anyone on this planet I’d rather come home to and I know he feels the same.

But as the years tick by, sometimes I think we both get into the habit of the everyday routine: kid, school, work, dinner, sleep, repeat. It can go like that for weeks before one of us says, “Hey, how ‘bout a date night?”

Whoever invented the idea of a date night for long-term couples should be given a Nobel Peace Prize. I really mean that. It’s a simple concept, but it does so much to rejuvenate the romance in a relationship.

For me, it’s a night when you remember your manners, when you take time to actually chew your food and when you ask about your partner’s day ? and really listen. It promotes appreciation for all the simple, often overlooked things that attracted you to your partner in the first place.

Pierre-Auguste Renoir: Study for 'Dance in the Country', 1883

It also helps rekindle passion between the sheets. A couple of weeks ago, I lamented feeling as though I failed my partner in some way because of past bouts of sexual drought. I think the biggest culprit was routine.

It took a while, lots of discussion and trial and error to figure that out. I remember going to my OBGYN to change birth control in the hopes that a hormonal shift would put some spice back into my sex life. But in the end what really did it was a conscious decision to change my habits.

It was like a light switch came on, and I chose to make time for the one person who mattered. I forced myself to feel attractive and engage my partner even when I was tired … and eventually created a routine that made us both happier. Having a date night helped.

One of the chief complaints I hear from couples with children is how guilty they feel when they take some time to themselves, whether it’s for one night or a weeklong vacation. I can honestly say I have never felt guilty about needing some alone time. I don’t do my stepdaughter any favors when I feel lonely, irritable or stressed out.

from Colich on Flickr

I wish my parents hadn’t been so concerned with whether or not I would break the rules if they left me alone or with friends and had tended to their own needs. If you want to know how you and your partner appear to the world, ask your kids to sum up your relationship.

My parents could have used a team-building exercise or 1,000, and mandatory date nights. In fact, my dad so rarely took my mom out on dates that he once had to remind her to leave the server’s tip on the table.

So here’s to all the long-term couples out there trying to maintain your spark. Routine happens to everyone, but there are solutions. Date night, I know, is just one. Any other suggestions?

Sex in San Diego, a column appearing every Thursday here at The OB Rag, explores topics related to sex in America’s Finest City. To encourage openness while still respecting privacy, most authors will use pseudonyms.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Anna Daniels May 17, 2012 at 11:05 am

Date nights are binding rituals—not the singular public affirmation of private affection and commitment that Judi Curry writes about here http://obrag.org/?p=60474 , but rather the ongoing intimate acts that affirm them.
Date night is one of a myriad of ways of saying “I hear you. I see you. I feel your presence.”
Amy Lowell wrote:
“When you came, you were like red wine and honey,
And the taste of you burnt my mouth with its sweetness.
Now you are like morning bread,
Smooth and pleasant.
I hardly taste you at all for I know your savour,
But I am completely nourished.”

It is wonderful to take the time in some small conscious way to be aware of how love nourishes us; it is wonderful to yet again feel our mouths burn with sweetness.
I wish you many many date nights.

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avatar patty jones May 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm

I love date night. Just sayin’

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avatar judi Curry May 17, 2012 at 6:56 pm

Wish I had a cause to have a date night!

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avatar Christopher dotson May 20, 2012 at 4:00 pm

We’ve been having date nights the last five years, off and on. A great invention!! Another? Try taking the ferris wheel observation deck at the pier. . . . I hear it can be very romantic ;)

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