Date Night - The Marriage Saver by Sara Barnes | Blogs | The Law House

Date Night – The Marriage Saver by Sara Barnes

By in All Blogs, Family Law Category on November 13th, 2013

I’m busy enough, but… It seems I have yet another thing to organise if I am to stay married – a date with my husband.I find it hard enough pinning him down as to when he is working late next week so I may have a challenge on my hands…

Inspired by the 2010 film ‘Date Night’, Solveig Horne, Norway’s new minister for children, equality and social inclusion, the secret to a long and happy marriage is not what you think. The usual traits of good humour, understanding, patience, a shared passion are relegated but what tops the list is a regular date with your spouse!

Divorce rates in Norway are high at around 40% with those aged 40 to 44 most likely to split from their partners, a very serious issue for Norway.

Horne, a divorcee, says that not allocating enough time to your marriage and partner has a huge impact on the relationship.She may be right and it is Norway, but it did start me thinking. How would I go about doing this? Are there rules for dating your own husband?Does it have to be weekly, monthly? Will he turn up? Who should organise it?

Do I have to dress up?Buy a new dress? My husband is used to seeing me in my finest spaghetti Bolognese stained tracksuit. He has seen all my clothes before (or at least I convince him he has… “New? This?… I have had it for ages…”).  This could be an expensive exercise if I factor in a meal, a babysitter, the taxi home.

What would we talk about?We always talk about the kids, their latest antics, what we need to do with them, what they eat… it never ends.If we decide that is off limits, I’ll have to start think of interesting things to say.This is getting too complicated, now as well as organising the date, I have to find something new or as yet unseen, sexy and alluring, and do some research to be interesting.I am already feeling the panic and burden of a first date.But I’ve been married for years.

On a more serious note,  the US National Marriage Project study “The Date Night Opportunity – What does couple time tell us about the potential value of date nights?”  found that wives who had “couple time” of less than once a week were nearly 4 times more likely to consider divorce compared to those who had time with their husband at least once a week.  On the same amount of time husbands are 2.5 times more likely to consider divorce, compared to husbands who spent time with their wife at least once a week. The bottom line is wives need a little more attention and if you see more of each other you are likely to see more of each other long term. 

We all know that after those early ‘butterfly’ feelings in a relationship will dwindle but  they are replaced by feelings of familiarity and attachment.Several scientific studies however show that it is novelty, that is doing new things together, that recreate the happy chemical surges in early courtship.Whilst this may not be enough to save a failing marriage, it may make a good marriage stronger.

Time to get into action.Better find out more about that new Lebanese restaurant my husband mentioned… See I do pay him some attention… sometimes..

For some marriages no amount of dating or spending extra time together will make the difference. If you find yourself at the point where you no longer wish to be married or are thinking about getting divorced  and would like some clear advice please contact Sara on 01245 809 556 or email us at