I am married to a woman who comes from a country where the extended family culture is very strong.
My wife and I live with my mother-in-law and my stepson and spending quality time with my wife alone without any distractions is very hard when we are at home. So having a regular overnight date or, at very least, a little getaway as often as possible is the fuel of our relationship as a couple.
My wife and I try to spend a date afternoon together at least once a month.
The city I live in is surrounded by thousands of places that are ideal for a romantic getaway: we’ve got lakes, the sea, medieval towns and villages, almost perfect weather so living in Rome helps a lot.
We do have plenty of “family time” at home, because Filipinos have a very strong family culture, and we also have a very active social life: we go to Filipino social gatherings very often as a family and we invite people to come over.
So opportunities to be together as a family abound.
We also have plenty of time together as a couple because every day I take my wife to work, the two of us alone, and we spend the whole evening in our bedroom where we do indeed enjoy plenty of intimacy.
But even so the very fact that we live with the extended family in one house (which is without a doubt a great privilege and a great source of joy) makes it necessary to physically remove ourselves, once in a while, from an environment that cannot really give a couple the opportunity to experience 100% couple time without any pressures or distractions.
So, as I said, we try to regularly get away from the routine and carve out time for the two of us alone.
But spending an afternoon together, even if we almost do it on a weekly basis, is not enough either.
To really function as a couple we need to have an overnight date or a long weekend together at least every two or three months.
Again, the beauty of living in Rome is that we have so many off-the-beaten track ancient towns and villages, that are not as famous as places like Florence, Siena or other mainstream tourist spots (but they are no less interesting and beautiful), where finding a cheap apartment online is very easy.
For example my wife and I recently found a cozy apartment in the town of Arezzo, not far from Florence, and we paid something like 30€ per night, peanuts indeed.
But we don’t even need to go to another region to have an overnight date: we recently rented an entire farmhouse near Lake Vico, only 50 km away from Rome, for more or less the same amount!
Although my wife is Filipina and for most Filipinos ancient streets of cobblestone and romantic street lamps of medieval towns, or even rustic farmhouses, don’t mean very much, as they prefer modern shopping malls and fast-food restaurants, I have discovered that, in the end, that kind of environment creates an amazing atmosphere where even a woman who grew up close to a city filled with skyscrapers and mega-malls can fully enjoy incredible vibes with her European hubby.