Est. 2011

July 21, 2017

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Real Talk Real Moms | Adult vs. Family Time

Today, the Real Talk Real Moms group is talking Adult vs. Family time. Such an interesting (and relevant) topic. Once kids enter the scene, finding time to exclusively be with adults (alone, with friends, with your partner, etc) can be such a tricky thing. And at the same time, for me personally, I want to involve my children in as much as life as possible, including time with adults. I want them to learn how to interact with adults, how to sit still in a coffee shop (without technology as a distraction) while mom drinks coffee and chats with a friend. Bringing them along might be more work, but I think it’s also worth it in the long run. Having lots of alone adult time isn’t a huge priority for me right now. There are a few areas of life I’ll touching on today, talking about how I/we spend our time:

Dates: Joe and I have probably gone on less than 5 dates outside the home since having kids (and Zoe is 4 years old). This doesn’t bother me since I’m a home-body and would almost always prefer to stay home, kids or no kids. We do put aside many late nights to talk over important issues or watch a movie (probably too often) or just sit next to each other on the couch working individually. I know this isn’t the same as getting dressed up (or not) and going out, but we love it. I think the main reason we don’t leave the house for dates is that it’s easiest to just stay home. We don’t have to make a decision on where to go, we don’t have to hire a babysitter and worry about the girls’ bedtime routine, we don’t have to drive back home late at night, etc.

Friendships: This is a big one! Most of my closest friends have kids, and I *think* this is a normal shift once you become a parent. I love hanging out with friends who have kids because the kids and the adults get play dates! I feel like it’s almost unfair to friends with no kids; it’s just hard when you always have to bring your kids, or arrange for childcare before seeing a friend, or make last minute schedule changes. So I default towards friends with kids, just because it seems like less of a bother for other people. If their kids are making noise and running around, there’s a good chance the fact that my kids noise and running around won’t bother them as much. Maybe I’m lazy (I am), but that’s kinda just where I am right now.

The only time I really ever get alone time with friends is during work hours and I’ve specifically hired a babysitter to take care of my kids. I can escape to a coffee shop or for a quick lunch. That, or late at night for a work event and Joe is at home with the girls. Or I try to perfectly time having friends over with my girls’ nap time…but that doesn’t always work out as planned. The older I get and the more immersed in this mom-world I become, the more I realize I’m a bad friend, especially to friends with no kids. Hopefully I can improve in this area….

Dinner: To me, dinner together as a family is one of the most important elements of family life. It’s the only meal that Joe is always home for, and I always try to make sure we’re all sitting down together for that time. And I definitely don’t want to make two dinners – one for the kids and one for the adults – and eat at two different times. I want them to eat the same food we’re eating, and I want them to be with us. We don’t always set the table with cloth napkins or make a complicated dinner, but it’s the act of slowing down, being together, and conversing and communing together as a family – both children and adults – that I want present in our home.

Growing up, missing dinner was almost never allowed, especially as we kids got older and had more and more responsibilities and commitments outside the home. We weren’t allowed to get up from the table immediately upon finishing our food, either, and we always had to ask to be excused from the table. Some of my most fond memories of my dad involve the dinner table, and I’m so incredibly thankful for those 100s of shared meals together. Sometimes, the kids were asked to be quiet while my parents talked about important issues. Most of the time we all laughed and talked together. My parents thought that being together and talking was so incredibly important, and I want to recreate this in my home. Few things bother me more than kids who can’t sit still at the table, who don’t know how to listen to their parents or the adults talk, or who think they can just wander away from the table as soon as they think they’re finished eating. I think it’s essential for children to be at the table, to learn to sit still, and to learn from the adults (I sound like my pop-pop <3). Ok, I’m done ranting. Still working on all of this with my children, by the way. They’re far from having perfect table manners…we’re still working on finishing food 😉

As always, I don’t think there’s really a right or wrong on this topic….these thoughts are just how we do things around here. And I definitely, definitely need to be a better friend to friends with no kids. But, HOW DO YOU DO ADULT vs. FAMILY TIME? In what areas do you include the kids, what areas do you try to do life alone with other adults? I’m so curious, and I’d love to hear your story!

Don’t miss the other mamas writing on today’s topic:

The Effortless Chic
Design for Mankind
The Life Styled
The Refined Woman
Sugar and Charm

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  1. Kacey Perez

    July 26th, 2017 at 4:36 pm

    I love this post. My husband and I rarely do anything just the two of us now that we have our little one. We also rarely do things with our friends without kids. Most of our friends also have kids so it has become easy for all of us just to get together with the littles. We also enjoy watching our kids interact with each other. That being said, I totally think that having JUST adult time is so important. My husband and i went on a quick Sunday evening date a couple of weeks ago and we were able to catch up. We left feeling refreshed. It is hard for me to believe that finding time to catch up with my husband has become a reality. But nothing lasts forever and one day are kids will be grown up and we will have all the time in the world to catch up!

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