Fun Date Ideas With Chronic Illness

Chronic illness is a tough thing to deal with. Add dating into the mix and it makes it that much more difficult and adds another complicating layer. Because when you are dating with a chronic illness, not only are you worried about yourself and how YOU feel, but you worry about the other person and making your significant other happy and meeting THEIR needs. So - how do you find balance between these two aspects? What happens when you are feeling too sick for a night out or for doing that energy-inducing activity that your partner has been dying to do? In relationships, it is a little bit of give and take. So, it is important for your partner to know that you have limits, or, limitations and what those limits are. Without a clear understanding of your condition and how it impacts you, you cannot really be successful in the dating world. You need to find someone who is accepting of who you are and embraces every part of you - including your chronic illness. And when you find that right person, they are going to be accepting to the fact that they may not be able to have the date night that they originally wanted all of the time, but will have to settle for something a little more low-key. And that will be okay with them! Over the past year of being with my boyfriend, I have come up with a list of fun date activities that are chronic illness friendly, and I want to share them with you. Just because you have a chronic illness, it does not mean that you aren't allowed to have fun and it certainly doesn't mean that you cannot make another person happy!

So, without further adieu: My Top Date Ideas for Those with Chronic Illness.

1. Have a game night
This is one of my favorites that my boyfriend and I do quite often! Especially when I am feeling too sick to go out anywhere or when we just don't feel like spending the time, energy, or money. My personal favorites are Trouble (Harry Potter addition!), Clue, and a dice game called Roll It. Have some wine (if your illness permits), and relax by just having a fun game-filled evening.

2. Have a picnic
When the weather is nice, this is one of my favorite things to do. You can go to the park and sit on a picnic table, or have a picnic in your own backyard! This is something my boyfriend and I did not too long ago, and we had it in my backyard on a beautiful day. We made sandwiches, set out cheese and crackers, poured some drinks and enjoyed the nice, warm weather. AND, if the weather is too cold, you can always have a picnic indoors. Set out a blanket inside and have a mock picnic.

3. Have a movie marathon or binge a show on Netflix
Nothing is better than Harry Potter weekend or finding a good show on Netflix to get caught up in! Spend time just enjoying each others company and getting lost in a good TV or movie series.

4. Go to the theatre
 If your feeling up to going out, take an evening to see a movie at the cinema that you have been dying to see. If your like me, you will want to see some live action sometimes too - go to see a play or a musical! This coming weekend my boyfriend and I actually have tickets to see Wicked, and I am SO excited. Yes, getting ready to go out can use a lot of energy, but once you get there your only job is to sit and enjoy the show. Pretty chronic illness friendly if you ask me.

5. Make dinner or bake a tasty dessert
Sometimes, staying in and making dinner/dessert is more fun than going out! Find that recipe that you have been dying to try and enjoy making a tasty meal or treat with your significant other. I am all about simple. So when I find a good recipe with not a lot of ingredients and is easy to make, I am all about that!

6. Go Painting
A couple of months ago, my boyfriend and I tried out Painting with A Twist, where we sat through a painting class of a cape cod scene while having a glass or two of wine. It was so much fun and by far one of my favorite date nights that we have had! To my own surprise, I learned that I can actually paint something decent with good direction and was even able to hang my painting on my wall. My boyfriend who was almost certain his painting would be a disaster (haha) ended up painting a great picture - I highly recommend taking an evening and doing this if they have something like that near you, and it is not too pricy either. **If you do not feel like you can physically go out to do this, bring the painting to your house!

7. Go to a local coffee shop
I have a couple great coffee places near me, and it is nice to just go and get a chai tea latte, giant vegan cookie, and sit and enjoy the atmosphere.

8. Go to your favorite ice cream shop
Because who can say no to homemade custard?


I hope some of these ideas work for you. I know we are all in different places with our illnesses, so some ideas might be easier or better than others. Find what works for you and try some new ones if you feel up to it! Just remember, don't push yourself and don't be too hard on yourself that you can't go running or hiking with your partner. He/She is with you for YOU, not for what you can or can't do.

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