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Are you Too Old to Date?

By:  Donna Martin

One topic of discussion among parents is, “when should I let my child begin dating?’.  It is an important topic and certainly both parents should be on the same page about rules and regulations when it comes time for their teenager to begin dating.

However, have you ever thought about this question?  Are we ever too old to date?  Apparently not; just visit a senior citizens' club and you will find couples in their 80’s who enjoy dating.  There is now an online dating service for couples over 50.  Of course these are people who are single and looking for a mate or just a friend.

But what about married couples?  Too often after married couples tend to get in a routine.   Since they have won over the love of their life, they sometimes forget that marriage is not the end of the conquest, but only the beginning.   For a marriage to grow and become stronger, both husband and wife must continue to pursue and woo each other.  Research has shown that continuing to date your spouse after marriage has its advantages.   According to an article entitled “The Date Night Opportunity” by W. Bradford Wilcox & Jeffrey Dew and published by The National Marriage Project University of Virginia, date night can improve marriage in the following ways.

Communication is improved because couples get away from distractions and obligations.  This time gives them an opportunity to reconnect with each other, to talk about their dreams and goals, and to just find out what is going on in each other’s lives at home and at work.

Date night improves the novelty or freshness of a marriage.  Before marriage couples looked forward to being together.  Things were new and exciting.  There was so much to learn about each other.  But it is easy to get in a rut after marriage.  Date night can even turn into a habit of going to the same old place and doing the same old thing.  So doing different and exciting things, going to different places, going at different times, or just spontaneously going out can keep your marriage fresh and alive.

Eros, or romantic love, is improved by having a date night.  Having an occasional date can improve your love life because it keeps life interesting and exciting.  It helps husbands and wives feel appreciated and important, and it gives couples something to look forward to which in turn keeps passion burning in a marriage.  But be careful to make sure that date night is not the only time you have sex during the week or during the month.  And, on the other hand, do not make your mate feel like the only reason to have date is to have sex.

Date night also helps couples build a sense of commitment to each other.  It helps husbands and wives know that each is important to the other.

Having a date with your spouse is also good for relieving stress.  Getting away alone together, if even for only a few minutes, does so much to help ease stress.  Laughing, talking and being distracted from regular routines can help make life easier to handle.

On this date 46 years ago, Mike and I had our first date.  When he left my house that night, he asked me out for a date for the next two weekends.  We have been dating consistently since that September night in 1969.  We look forward to our dates, and we always have fun.  Date your spouse.  You don’t even have to spend money.  Just do something together.  Find a babysitter and go out!  You will be glad you did.

The Martins currently present “Happy Together” Marriage Enrichment Events for churches and organizations.  To schedule an event call Michael at 940-735-1515.  They are certified “Prepare/Enrich” Facilitators and are available to work with couples on an individual basis using the “Prepare/Enrich Assessment.”  They publish a weekly “Happy Together” Blog about family and marriage issues.  You can order copies of their new books Dancing With Death and 366 Tidbits We Have Learned in 14,610 Days of Marriage, read and subscribe to their “Happy Together” Blog by logging onto the Martin’s website at 


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