• Kristy @ Master Your Card

    You forgot to mention a discussion of how to handle situations in which the children misbehave. Each parent has a different view on how children should be disciplined, so that’s a very important discussion to have. My sister recently let a woman babysit her kids and this woman had a nasty habit of smacking her own kids across the face. While my sister isn’t opposed to the occasional spanking on the bottom, she absolutely does not condone smacking across the face. Needless to say, she’s found a new babysitter.

    This is a great idea, and I certainly agree that married couples should try to find or start a co-op of some sort. Not only are the benefits to the marriage spot on, but you also have the added benefit of being a better parent. You have some alone time away from the kids, which allows you to relax and refocus. This can really help you when dealing with your children. I think trying for two to three nights a month would be even better than just one.

  • Elizabeth I

    This sounds like a good idea but I have never known of anyone who has done this. This is a lot of work, you have to generate time to watch other people’s children, and find time to go out.

    Thus, I am going to make the argument that paying a babysitter $12 (yes, $12…I have three small kids) an hour and going out to eat once or twice a month is one of the best financial decisions you can make.

    First, if you have found a babysitter for an evening, both you and your spouse will go out. If you were at home and decided to watch a movie, would you really talk and catch up? What if one of the kids started to cry, would you actually see the movie? Leaving the house guarantees you undivided attention to your spouse. It allows you to have conversations that are more difficult at home.

    Second, it give you an experience as a “couple” not as a family. Couples, individuals, and families need their own hobbies and interests. How many times do you hear divorcing couples say “we grew apart”? Maybe the better description would be “we didn’t grow at all”. Every relationship needs to be nourished.

    Third, going out to eat and hiring a babysitter is cheaper (and more fun) than marital counseling or getting a divorce.

    My husband made the suggestion that we go out to eat once a month beginning in January 2009. We did this for an entire year. Our marriage was enhanced. We were able to afford this by making it part of our budget. We cut down on other things. In the beginning I thought it was a bit extravagant but after seeing the way it enhanced our marriage. I think it was money well spent.

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