The puppy love stage of relationships is always unforgettable; at this stage, a couple is intentional about spending time together. Remember those days, right after you got married? All the movie and dinner dates, impromptu road trips, the intimacy, and how you would go out of your way to make your partner feel special. Unfortunately, this stage is often phased out when kids come into the picture. Your schedules and priorities are immediately altered, and without you realizing it, your life revolves around your children’s needs.

Maintaining a healthy relationship with your partner after kids is possible, but you must put in more effort. You want your kids to grow up with both parents in the home; neglecting your partner puts your marriage at risk of divorce. According to the American Psychological Association, over 20% of first marriages don’t last beyond five years. So, what do you do to keep the romance alive?

1. Date Night

You’ll be busy caring for your kids. With all the feeding, napping, cleaning, and working, it’s easy to forget about quality time with your partner. However, you’ll need to create a schedule where you can make plans for date night and stick to it. Start with a simple coffee date at a coffee shop near your home and work up to a proper dinner or movie date. If you’re worried about leaving the kids at home, ask a friend or family member to watch them or hire a babysitter.

2. Gifts

Although spending quality time with your partner is one of the best love gifts, it wouldn’t hurt to receive physical gifts. Physical gifts reignite sparks in a relationship, and no, it doesn’t have to be a special occasion for you to gift your partner. Gifting them when they least expect it is a welcome surprise. It makes your partner feel appreciated and loved, strengthening your romantic bond. Finding the ‘right’ gift for your partner can be daunting, but don’t sweat it. Remember, it’s the thought that counts. For instance, if they like flowers, they might be among the 65% of Americans who say that flowers make them feel special, according to the Society of American Florists. If it’s been a while since the last time you gifted your partner, send them a bouquet of their favorite arrangement today.

3. Take a Romantic Stroll

For some parents, putting their children down for naptime can be a nightmare. Studies have shown that children sleep better outdoors. Therefore, it might be a good idea to put your child in a stroller so you and your partner can go for a walk. You and your partner can enjoy a scenic, romantic walk when the child is asleep. Just ensure the walk is in a natural setting so your child’s sleep isn’t interrupted by traffic noises.

4. Give Your Partner a Day Off

Children are cute and fun, but caring for them can be exhausting. As partners, you need to recognize when either of you needs to take a break. Getting a whole day off may be unrealistic, but you can at least spare a couple of hours for your partner to socialize or nap. You can also go the extra mile and run them a nice relaxing bath just as they like it. Such acts of service go a long way in proving to your partner you genuinely love and care for them.

When a person is tired, their mood, energy, and sex drive are affected. If the time off doesn’t help to lift their spirits, you may want to consider testosterone therapy. A study by the National Library of Medicine found that, overall, after undergoing testosterone therapy, 70% of patients were satisfied with the results.

Successful marriages and relationships take work, especially when kids are involved. The good thing is that, with some thought, you’ll find ways of rekindling the flames of passion for a wonderful relationship. Always remember, it’s the little things that matter the most. Just put in the work, and your relationship will work.