Daddy-daughter dates, daddy son dates, mommy-son dates, and mommy-daughter dates are all good dates. And although that sounds like a mouth full, what it really means is that you have many, many fantastic chances to invest powerfully in your little one’s life with a simple date. Taking your child on a date in early childhood plays a major role in child training. Early childhood is the perfect time to start parent-child dates with your toddler. Taking your child on a date during the toddler years is so time well spent for parent and child. So, let’s talk about many of the benefits of not putting it off.
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Why Is Taking Your Child On a Date Important?
When your first baby was born, taking him on a parent-child date wouldn’t have made much sense. Parent-child dates are for one-on-one bonding time and let’s face it, that baby was attached to you 24/7. One-on-one bonding time was All. You. Did.
But, now… that your family is growing, parent-child dates need to become a priority.
Taking your child on a date in early childhood sets a fantastic standard. A standard for girls of what is acceptable on a date and what is not. And a standard of behavior for boys. Neither one of those standards should be left to chance.
I remembering reading a powerful little piece of information when my second child was about to arrive. The author was a parenting expert who spoke about the need to spend alone time with your firstborn when having a new baby.
He stated that a baby’s needs are basic and simple. Feed me, keep me warm, etc. However, an older child has a great emotional need as a family grows. A need to feel included and tethered to his parents.
I knew then how important it would be to get alone, on purpose with my first born child, regularly.
There are 15 benefits to taking your child on a date in early childhood, that I’ll talk about here. These are my favorite reasons to start doing this earlier rather than later. It’s never too early to start parent-child dates, but it can become too late, really fast.
15 Benefits To Taking Your Child On A Date In Early Childhood.
- #1. One on one time alone, without distraction, is essential for the emotional well-being of your child. Particularly one who has just gained a sibling.
- #2. Getting in the habit of parent-child dates as young as possible makes this practice less likely to fall through the cracks later on.
- #3. Having parent-child dates makes sibling rivalry less likely.
- #4. Builds confidence in a child. Read more about child confidence here.
- #5. Reinforces your child’s importance and position within the family.
- #6. Fills your child’s love tank.
- #7. The best parenting practices are the ones you start the earliest.
You Set the Standards
- #8. Your daughter will literally grow up seeing and feeling how a lady acts on a date and how a man should treat her.
- #9. Your son will also literally grow up seeing and feeling how a lady should act on a date and how he should treat her.
- #10. Provides you with a little time to de-stress from the pressure of parenting more than one child. The more children you have the more it makes having only one “seem” like a breeze.
- #11. Little kids are cheap dates. Going on dates with your small child doesn’t have to cost a lot of money, or any money at all. A 30 minute trip to the closest park is totally free and totally effective.
- #12. Little kids are easy to impress. No need to get dressed up (although that is fun as he gets older) or even take a shower (hello tired mommy.) Just throw on some shoes, grab your older child, and get out together.
- #13. You’re setting a wonderful example for others.
- #14. Your husband gets time alone with the new baby. (this is crazy important for a number of reasons, but I won’t go there right now:)
- #15. Parent-child dates make your family stronger. This is my favorite reason of all! Let’s just be honest, when you make taking your child on a date every month a priority, it’s going to be a lot harder for your family to crumble than if you don’t. Why? Because you are investing in your family instead of other things.
Life is Fleeting
The things you really want to do, but don’t start doing right away, will probably never happen. If you don’t start intentionally taking your child on dates as early as possible, you’ll wake up one day, he’ll be 13 and you’ll wonder where all the time has gone.
We started taking your children on a date when my firstborn was 3 and his sister was 6 months old. We’d swap up every other month and each parent would get a date with each child. We kept it cheap and we kept it fun. Now, all these years later, we still love our cheap, no-fuss, parent-child dates with all 4 kids, and they are more important than ever!
Starting dates early makes them a habit. “The way it’s always been” kind of thing. The 15 benefits above give you all the reasons you need to start parent-child dates, right now. Heck, #15 alone is reason enough to not put it off.