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Dinner with just you and your spouse are important and necessary if you ask me, but dinners for four are just as important.  According to a study at Wayne State University bonding with other couples actually strengthens your own relationship.  

I know if you are like most couples it is hard enough to schedule a weekly date night with just you and your spouse but I want to encourage you to plan and schedule couple double dates that you can go on ever so often.  I know every time my husband and I have double dated with friends of ours our conversation and life was enriched.  
It is a nice change up if you already date your spouse on a regular basis and it is a great way to get to know other people.  We have gone a double date with people my husband has worked with, people we go to church with and then also with couples whose kids play with our kids and don’t count out family.  How well do you know your brother-in-law or sister-in-law.  I find too often you spend time with your sibling, but do not spend time with their spouse other than family get-togethers for the holidays or birthdays.  Going on a double date with your sister and brother-in-law is a great way to spend quality time that is not just revolved around the holidays or maybe a family business.  
This is a great way to get to know people, sometimes you know someone but do not know their spouse.  I find this especially true with other women friends I have, our kids play together, we women get together and talk but I have only said hello or goodbye to the husband.  This is a great way for both husbands to know the parents of the kids your kids engage with either through sports, school, or church.
I remember one time in particular a couple we attend church with called us spontaneously and asked if we could make it work to go out to dinner.  Stuff like this is completely out of my box.  I am quite the planner and scheduler so normally I would say no, I don’t have a babysitter lined up and not sure how that would work.  But for whatever reason this time I said let me see if I can make it work, I did have to try a couple different people for watching my kids but it worked out.  I am so glad we went, we had a great time, I thoroughly enjoyed myself, and I watched my husband flourish in adult conversation.  He will tell you he not a social lite but put him in the right atmosphere and his “I” type, outgoing personality shines.  
It is nice to have added input when it comes to conversation, sometimes as married couples we talk about the same thing, or if you would discuss topics from the same perspective or vantage point.  With another couple at the table you get a different perspective.  You can also find things you have in common, many times it is nice to have another wife chime in on a topic that is like you, so your husband doesn’t think it’s just you that thinks that way or vice versa.  It gives you insight to the opposite sex if you will.  
Going on a double date will you give you conversation starters to share with your spouse in the days following.  You will be able to discuss what you learned, what you enjoyed, adapt things that are working for the other couple in your own life.  
Going out to eat would probably be my first choice for a double date but you can also venture out on a group friendly activity, such as bowling, miniature golf, visiting the gun range or even hosting something at your home.  You can have them over for dinner and a movie, or game night, or keep it simple and plan on dessert only.
Going out on double dates with other couples helps build a support system in your life.  I have watched in my own life and the life of those close to us when you are facing a tougher time in life how having other couples in your life help both you and your spouse.  We all have ups and downs and unfortunately sometimes crisis that take place.  When you have other couple friends that you both can lean on and draw strength from it helps get through those tough times.  
If it has been a while since you have been on a double date, schedule one this week, even if it has to be a few weeks out.  Just plan and purpose to go on a double date ever so often.  It has been a while for us as well since we have been on a double date, we just scheduled one in a couple of weeks, and I am already looking forward to it.  I know we will have a great time and be enriched as a couple.  
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Comment by Ashley Owen on May 14, 2015 at 3:05pm

We are actually planning a double date with my brother and sister-in-law when they come in town. This is a first in a while for us. So fun though!

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