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Raising a child with any special need comes with its own unique set of challenges. While every milestone and small victory along the way calls for a celebration, there are other moments when a timeout from parenthood is in order. Every parent should have some time to themselves, when they can take a brief retreat from the hustle and bustle of daily life in order to regroup, reconnect, and rekindle that romantic spark. Here are some affordable and fun date night ideas that you may want to keep in mind the next time you want to paint the town red (or whatever color strikes your fancy).


Date Night #1: Treat yourself to an evening of culture. There are times when everybody feels the need to soak up a bit of culture (apart from your child’s macaroni art and whatever they’ve recently scribbled on the walls, of course). So, why not treat yourself to an evening at a local museum or art gallery. Peruse the exhibit with your significant other and enjoy a lively discussion, or talk about your favorite pieces.  

Date Night #2: Attend a local concert. Chances are there are a variety of concerts or musical performances being held in your area. You can usually find live music at restaurants, bars, or even local cafes. Look online or in your local newspaper to find out which concerts may be playing near you and make a date night out of it. If you’re particularly adventurous, you can always opt for a karaoke bar.

Date Night #3: Enroll in a class or workshop.  If you or your partner has always wanted to learn a new skill or has a passion for a particular hobby, you can enroll in a class at the local community college. You may even find local businesses that hold weekly or monthly workshops centered around a specific theme, such as wine tasting or cooking.

Date Night #4: Go for a stroll. A date night doesn’t have to be anything elaborate. In fact, you can just grab a coffee and spend the evening strolling through the park, down the promenade, or along the shore. This will give you a chance to catch up, share your thoughts and opinions, and reconnect. A very economical option!

Date Night #5: Venture to a local bookstore or library. This is a completely free (and surprisingly fun) way to spend your date night. Just go to a local bookstore or library, peruse the shelves, and then chat about some of your book selections. This is an especially brilliant idea for book lovers who want to take a break from picture books and bedtime fairy tales.

Date Night #6: Dinner and a movie at home. Don’t underestimate the beauty of a night spent in watching one of your favorite movies (or even a new release that doesn’t involve cartoon characters or a PG rating) and cooking a special meal. You can even do this date night idea once the kids have gone off to bed, or arrange for a sitter to watch them while you enjoy some time alone together.

Date Night #7: Be a kid again! Why not let your hair down and live it up for your date night. Go bowling, hold a spontaneous miniature golf tournament, or go-kart racing to let your inner child roam free for the evening. You are guaranteed to enjoy a night of laughs, silliness, and stress relief.

Date Night #8: Turn your home into a spa. You don’t need to spend money going to a spa to get a massage. You can turn your bedroom into a spa by getting some inexpensive massage oils, aromatherapy candles, and giving each other a relaxing back rub. You can also finish out the spa experience by enjoying a soothing foot soak or listening to some calming music.

Finding the time to reconnect (without feeling guilty about leaving your child with a caregiver) can be tricky, especially if your to-do list seems to always be a mile long and medical bills don’t leave much wiggle room in your budget. However, it’s important to take a breather every once in a while and to focus on your own well-being, so that you can have the strength and energy you need to keep being the amazing parent that you already are!