I have been married long enough to learn a few things. Some of the lessons I have learned have come from doing things right, but the vast majority of the lessons I’ve learned from marriage have come from areas that I’ve completely failed in. I share my mistakes with men in hopes that they will not have to make the same mistakes for themselves. Perhaps one of the biggest mistakes that I made during the first years of my marriage was that I didn’t take my wife out on a single date. I’m serious. It was many years after we had been married before I thought to take my wife on a date.
So, men, my advice to you is simple: date your wives! Perhaps you are better than me and you never stopped taking your wife on dates like you used to before you got married. Congratulations! I wish someone had taught me to do the same thing. I wish someone had been around to tell me that marrying your wife does not mean that you’ve completely won her and that you will never have to do anything to win her love again. Or I wish that someone had told me that the point of the whole thing was never to win her heart by marrying her and then never win her heart again. Oh how helpful it would have been to know that winning and keeping the heart of your wife takes time, effort, and a few special dates here and there. My first years of marriage would have been easier and better had I known these simple things.
I think my wife nearly had a heart attack on the day that I asked her to go on a date with me that Friday night, and I guess that I shouldn’t have been so surprised by her surprise. For a brief moment she looked at me like she was looking at a stranger. It had really taken her off guard that I had thought to date her and then planned it well in advance. One of her favorite bands was playing in a city nearby and I bought us tickets, got a babysitter, and invited her on a dinner and concert date. I cannot tell you how much my wife loved being loved by me in that way. All night long she glowed like a woman who knew deeply that she was being loved.
Since that first date I have made a commitment to take my wife on at least two dates per month. Sometimes I plan extravagant dates and we dress up and go out dancing and to a fancy dinner. Other times we head to our favorite bookstore, order coffees and look at magazines and books together. Some of my favorite dates are the simple ones, the ones where we know that nothing matters as much as just being together.
So, men, whether you have been married for three months or for thirty-three years, make it a habit to invite your wife out on dates. She will be so glad you did, and so will you.