Dear Mistress Maeve,
My boyfriend and I have been together for nearly five years. When we met, we were just out of grad school, still went out on week nights and ate ramen noodles and drank Miller Lite to save cash. Back then, the only entertainment we could afford was getting it on. Now we're both "young professionals" who work 60 hours per week and barely have the energy for happy hour on Fridays, let alone marathon weekend sex (which we used to have all the time). We are still partners in crime, and I love him madly, but I miss him. I cringe at the thought of instituting "date night" — seems like something couples do to rekindle their love lives when there's nothing left. Yet, at the same time, I want more time with him. I'm sick of going to bed every night, him with his work papers and me with my Blackberry. Can we get the excitement back without becoming a cliché?
Date Night Deserter
Why on earth is your Blackberry going to bed with you? If you're not using the phone's vibrate setting for personal pleasure, that device shouldn't be anywhere near your bed. If you are missing the intimacy that you and your “partner in crime” once shared, start by making your bed a no-work and no-technology zone — the time you spend under the sheets should be focused on each other.
Unfortunately, Hollywood likes to portray "date night" as a chore that tired, lustless couples must perform on a weekly basis. But just because it gets a bad rap on television doesn't mean there's no merit to date night. The reality is, if you don't carve out time for your relationship — and nobody else will do it for you — you'll risk drifting farther apart.
My advice is to grab some ramen noodles and Miller Lite, toss your man's briefcase and your Blackberry in a closet, and get back to your old selves — if only just for one date night. After you've reconnected, make some ground rules: No work in bed, at least one night a week to focus on each other, and at least one weekend per month for marathon sex. It may be a little cheesy, but you have to remember — cheese is delicious.