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4 easy ways to keep romance alive



Romance is alive and well with these easy tips


(Plan a date night, says author Keisha Cox)

Being a mother of four, my bedroom is about as romantic as Grand Central Station. Finding a quiet moment with my significant other is a rarity and when it does happen, sleeping is the first activity that usually comes to my mind.

Becoming a new parent brings with a wide array of challenges. One of the biggest: keeping the romantic spark going. For one thing: their romantic life is constantly being disrupted by the new baby, and the new schedules that have to be created, and are usually being changed. 

Bobbi Peterson of Poughkeepsie says that after she and her partner, Jamel Williams, had 8-month-old Nyella their increased responsibilities resulted in less time together. “We both work so we don’t get to see each other much.”
Aside from the lack of time, couples are often worn out by the new demands of parenting and their romantic life gets pushed to the back burner. Erskine Alexander of Brewster says that after having 3-year-old Amirah, he and his wife, Sabrina, needed to shift the attention that they would normally give to each other toward their daughter. “Before Amirah came into our lives, we used to talk all the time.”

While keeping the romantic flames burning after a new addition can be a challenge, it is not impossible. Erskine and Sabrina realized that having a child was a big adjustment for each of them and they keep their romance going by “just supporting each other and being there for each other.” With a little extra planning and attention couples can rekindle that flame even with the demands of parenting.

Plan a date night

It may sound simple but many couples do not take the time out to date. When you become a parent, dating requires a little more planning ahead so make sure to reserve a babysitter ahead of time to ensure you can have time with your significant other. Both Bobbi and Jamel and Erskine and Sabrina plan ahead and leave their children with a sitter periodically so that they can have a date night and focus their attention on each other.

While a night out on the town can be fun, many parents prefer a quiet night in so they can enjoy being home alone. Kevin and Joanne Quigley of Poughquag try to squeeze in a movie night at home after they put 8-month-old Michael to sleep.
Aside from the normal dinner and a movie, you can also try spicing up your date night with candles, dancing, massage, or even a bubble bath.

Say “I Love You”

Joanne and Kevin make up for lost time by making time to say “I love you.” Sometimes you need to state the obvious and remind your partner how much he/she is appreciated.

And if you have a way with words try leaving love notes or poems for your significant other. Joanne and Kevin say that they also make an extra effort to give each other small gifts to show their appreciation. Recently, Kevin bought Joanne her favorite cookies to let her know that he was thinking of her during his busy day.

Spend quality time together

With all of the demands of parenting, waiting for a date night may take awhile. So in the meantime, why not make the best of the time that you do have together? That may mean cooking together, eating dinner together, or even going to bed at the same time. Bobbi and Jamel are able to stay connected by making time to take walks together.

Share responsibilities

It is hard to feel romantic if you are worn out. If you or your mate are too tired at the end of the day to be able to enjoy quality time with you then you may want to consider shifting responsibilities. Erskine says that he has taken on more of the household responsibilities knowing that if Sabrina has less on her plate she will have more time for him. Similarly, Kevin will help Joanne get an easy start to her day by doing things like putting gas in her car before she leaves in the morning.

Your little one deserves and demands much of your attention but it’s also important to periodically take some time away from him or her and spend it alone with your partner.

In the meantime, give your significant other time each day where he/she has your complete attention. This may mean a phone call or a text message or snuggling late at night in bed. In any case, it’s essential that you find ways to stay connected so you don’t drift apart.

Keisha Cox is a mom, and a licensed clinical social worker.