Date night ideas for gay parents can be hard to come by. However, a study conducted by SFSU found that gay parents suffer the relationship stress like decreased intimacy, after they have children.
Across the nation, 1 in 5 gay male couples have children. Raising children seems to have little effect on whether gay couples have open or monogamous relationships. However, having children does increase the strain and emotional stressors gay couples contend with, according to a study published in the journal Couple and Family Psychology in 2012.
While having children and building a family can bring meaning, joy and richness into your life, it can also limit the time you have to focus on anything else. Gone are the weekend brunches, spontaneous trips and time and money spent on expensive hobbies.
While there are many lifestyle changes that having kids can bring about, there are a number of things you can do to nurture your romantic relationship and keep the love alive.
Date night ideas for gay parents
Be spontaneous. Once you have kids, impromptu anything pretty much goes out the window. While I do recommend couples schedule a weekly date night, I encourage you to keep some flexibility and excitement alive in the process. You can accomplish this by picking a night, hiring a sitter, and then allowing your imagination to run wild. Maybe go to a hotel bar, hike or just walk around town. Maybe you take turns planning a special date night and surprising your partner. The key here is to keep it flexible and fun.
Don’t talk about household stressors on the date. When you have kids, your partnership can become dominated by talking about the nuts and bolts of raising a family. Questions like: who is picking up Sally and where are you going for Thanksgiving this year? Take 10-15 minutes at the beginning of your date and get reacquainted with your partner in a personal and playful way. Talk about silly stuff, laugh and be naughty. We each have a strong desire to be seen and taken in by our partners. Make sure you’re allowing for that.
Keep your sex life alive. There’s a great episode of Modern Family where Phil and Claire are attempting to keep their sex life alive by role playing at a local hotel lobby bar. Of course Claire’s dad happens to be in the same hotel and they run into each other in an awkward exchange. But the important part here is that they were trying to stay sexually connected. How do you keep things interesting with your partner? Do you sext? Send naughty pictures? Talk about your deepest fantasies? Even with kids it is possible to keep your sex life interesting.
While kids do change your life in a big way, you can increase intimacy by being spontaneous, setting better boundaries around stress management and keeping your sex life alive and healthy.