Seeking Revitalization of Marriage Ideas

Updated on September 04, 2008
J.L. asks from Canonsburg, PA
4 answers

My husband and I have lost our intimacy. We love each other, I am certain of that fact. But, the parenting of our 8 year old son, our 4 year old daughter and all of the demands that go with all of that (as I'm sure you all know), have pretty much taken over. I've heard over and over from people that we need to find time for ourselves. When we get the kids to bed, we're too exhausted to do anything but pass out on the couch (usually). I love movies, he doesn't. We're on one income, so money stresses him out - which means going out to dinner or anything else that costs money for that matter becomes more of a stressor. We are going to Washington DC tomorrow for 4 days without the kids where he will be tied up for the days on conferences. We will have the evenings together, but I must be honest - I don't want to go. I keep telling myself "why"? I need some advice for the immediate, but also the long-term. I don't want my marriage to end because I love this man deeply. But, I am lost when it comes to figuring out ways to connect. Thanks gang!

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So What Happened?

Thank you all for your comments! I took them all to heart! Not only did I have some alone time to check out DC (I took the Metro clear across town and walked back, stopping here and there along the way!), but my husband and I had time to unwind, and TALK. We reiterated our love for one another and how growing old has created insecurities in both of us (can you believe a man actually admitted that??) But, it was a very, very wonderful trip and we reconnected on a mental level that I thought had all but left us! Thank you all again!!

More Answers



answers from Pittsburgh on

What kinds of things did you and your husband like to do before you had kids? I've found that resorting to those times works best for us. We used to play board games a lot and watch reruns of old favorite tv shows. Pulling out our wedding video and photos works also. I try to leave my husband little notes or send emails to thank him for things he has done. I know sometimes he feels neglected and taken for granted so I try to let him know I notice, it's just difficult to express my feelings when I'm tired and busy with potty training, cooking, cleaning, etc. Good luck! I hope you have a good trip.

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answers from Pittsburgh on

Hi J.,

Good for you for at least trying the trip! I always hear about making 'date nights' and Making time too, but think it's even harder to push yourselves into having fun, I think more it needs to come naturally. Maybe a few ideas for you trip: Treat yourself to a new 'nightie' even just an inexpensive one from WalMart. It doesn't have to be 'sexy' but sometimes something new like that will make you feel better. Hopefully you'll be able to take some time to enjoy YOURSELF during the day! Borrow some books or magazines to take for the trip, (I know I can read a short good book in 2 days) maybe they have an indoor pool you could relax by? I always like bringing a hair-dye kit, and all those "Bath and Body" products I get for Christmas that I never normally take time for to treat myself with. Find out from the concierge or front desk points of interest that are within walking distance. Maybe offer a couple ideas to your hubby when he gets back of some things to do, but maybe if he's not in the mood for anything after his day be prepared to do something by yourself for awhile, like read or take a short walk until he's ready to do something. After my son was a few months old my husband and I took our first overnight trip to try to 'revitalize' ourselves. We just went to a Hotel about an hour away, he surprised me with an old board game and we also found a little pub nearby that had a pool table. We didn't even have sex that time but just being able to relax and sleep was one of the best times we've ever had!
I hope everything goes well for you!



answers from Pittsburgh on

Hi J.,
I think you have a fairly common situation there. My advice to you would be not to put any pressure on yourself or your husband for this trip. Just try to find some fun things to do on your own during the day. Ask for some suggestions for nearby places to eat so you & your husband can check them out after his conference is over for the day. Think of it as a nice, unexpected vacation for yourself with the added bonus of a date for dinner! See what happens. I wouldn't expect it to be any particular way--just let things go as they do and relax and enjoy some time to yourself for a change! I know we get very wrapped up in our kids and putting their needs first but you will have a good excuse to focus on yourselves for a few days. I hope you enjoy your trip. (The Sunset Evening Parade at the Marine Corp barracks is very nice--Silent Drill Team, etc.) but I think you need to get tickets in advance so don't wait too long!



answers from Pittsburgh on

Dear J.,
I think it's a maternal instinct to not want to leave your kids. No one can take care of them like you can. But rationally you know they will be safe and do fine for a couple of days. I agree with the other ladies that you should focus on treating yourself while you're in DC!!!
When my husband and I go on a business trip to DC, I like to sleep in, take a long bath, lotion myself, no one is rushing me. When I'm ready, I take a cab to Dupont Circle and walk around and look at the architecture. There are shops and restaurants with outdoor seating, a bookstore with a bar, all walking distance from each other. The National Art Gallery is free and always has cool exhibitions from all over the world. You can lose yourself for a long time that way. Maybe you're just a little overwhelmed to be alone all day, but really it will be so fun. And then you'll tell your husband about the adventures you had and your exhilaration will rub off on him. The Madison Hotel has a pianist in the lobby from 6 to 10PM. He used to play in the White House... and that's free too!
Have a blast and remember , "When Mama ain happy, ain nobody happy"!
Your kids will like the new you when you come back!
:) N

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