Do You Suffer from Old Married Couple Syndrome?

by Erika Torres

lucyAre you tired, run-down, listless? Do you poop out at parties? Are you un-poop-ular?

–Lucy Ricardo

Do you get in bed before 10? Do you and your partner prefer to spend weekends at home?  Do you book an appointment for the both of you at the dentist on Valentine’s Day and don’t even think twice about it?

If so, you may suffer from old married couple syndrome!

It’s okay, join the club.

Eric and I have become used to being the butt of our friends’ jokes when it comes to staying out late (which we don’t), or going out on weekends (which we rarely do).

This new lifestyle of staying home started almost immediately after we got married. In fact, during our dating days, we often stayed out well past midnight. We went to bars, we went wine tasting, we made plans for Sunday afternoons, for crying out loud!

And as soon as we got married…it just… stopped.

Suddenly, the idea of staying home and cooking a meal together became oh-so-romantic. Eventually, home-cooked meals by candlelight  turned into takeout and Netflix, but we were happy none-the-less (and so were our bellies, which each gained at least a good 10 pounds each).

For a while, while we were living in the shack, we could blame our lack of nightlife on our limited funds. But now that we’re doing better financially…we’ve run out of excuses.

I really felt old, though, when we decided to scrap our plans for a wine tasting getaway this upcoming weekend so that we could have a staycation instead.

Who does that!?

What kind of normal late twenty-something couple says “Honey, screw wine tasting, let’s stay home instead!” and actually means it?!

I have no hope for us now. We may pretend to still be cool, but we know better. *Gasp* When did we turn into our parents?!

Do you and your partner suffer from old married couple syndrome?


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Nichole C February 22, 2013 - 7:03 am

Hahaha, sometimes we get into the same rut but when we do go out, it feels GREAT and reminds me that we were in a rut (which I wasn’t even aware of)…

Sarah Park February 17, 2013 - 11:12 am

You should try going out at night sometimes or spend the weekend out of the city. It is important to keep the bond and still create a happy memories and not just get used to each other’s presence.

Johnny Moneyseed February 15, 2013 - 12:06 pm

You sound like me and my wife! We love living like that as well. We occasionally play board games with friends, but that’s the extent of “going out”.

Kathleen February 15, 2013 - 6:28 am

Ha I love it! I’ve definitely been there in relationships. Don’t stop being fun though. We need people like you to help us get out there!

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Joanna @ Our Freaking Budget February 14, 2013 - 11:23 am

Haha… just wait until you have a baby! We basically don’t leave the house now except for necessities. But I hope that changes as she gets older!

One Frugal Girl February 13, 2013 - 8:15 pm

My husband and I seem old compared to you two, (we are in our mid-30s), but we stay home, never stay out late and cook a lot of meals in our tiny kitchen. Although I like to go out every once in awhile I actually prefer our lives this way. I find it so much more enjoyable to snuggle inside on a warm winter night then go out, stay out way past our bedtimes and wake up hungover and miserable. Now I actually feel sorry for my single friends that spend so much time out and about. It is so cozy at home 🙂

Canadian Budget Binder February 13, 2013 - 6:35 pm

Haha, great post. I think most couples go through this as things change when you get married although they don’t really have to. We still go on dates together and spend time together doing things we enjoy. We just don’t spend alot of money doing it!

Michelle February 13, 2013 - 4:16 pm

My husband and I are 27 and we went out last weekend to see a Play which is totally uncharacteristic of us, we got out from the play and it was 9:00 and I said wow this late. We also go to bed around 1030 11 even on weekends. We still do the date night thing at least 1 time a week but usually home by 9. We are not ashamed of our lameness, I had plenty of nights spent hanging out in bars spending lots of money on drinks. I prefer to drink my wine at home:)

Megan February 13, 2013 - 3:41 pm

We’re total home-bodies. I love it! I stayed out til midnight the other week with my bro and it threw me so out of whack! Hubs and I try to go to bed at 9 or 10, but when he works til 9:30 its a challenge. Either way, I’d much rather cuddle up on the couch with a glass of wine and a movie!

eemusings February 13, 2013 - 3:25 pm

Shit yeah! Midnight is late for us these days and we are UNASHAMED.

Sara February 13, 2013 - 3:07 pm

We’ve decided that we need new friends in our current town. We both love to get out and do things with friends, but all of our friends here are all about getting smashed in dive bars. While I admit that the occasional dive bar night is great fun, it’s not what I want to be doing three nights per week. So we do spend more time in than we would like, and we’re mocked as the old married couple in our group of friends.

Mo' Money Mo' Houses February 13, 2013 - 2:37 pm

My BF and I go through phases of that but then we realize we need to get out of our rut and make plans for a date night or to go out with friends more. Of course it seems to be a cycle with us.

Lisa @ Elle Sees February 13, 2013 - 2:35 pm

We can totally relate! We’ve noticed a particular problem in arranging happy hours with non-married friends – we mean 6-8 and they think we mean more like 9-11. We’ve always loved doing dinner just the two of us and relaxing (and going to bed and sleeping in).

CeCe @Frugalista Married February 13, 2013 - 1:18 pm

Well, it’s very good that you are comfortable as a couple just staying home. I’d say I do but WE don’t and can’t because my husband really likes to get out and do things. We still date up a storm 2 years into marriage. I am glad for that because if I had it my way we probably would stay home a lot more and I know that it’s good to get out and enjoy life outside the home even if I often don’t feel like it. We definitely don’t go out clubbing or anything like that very often. Never did.

krantcents February 13, 2013 - 10:18 am

We are an old (44 years) married couple! We normally do things on the weekend, but we may not go out every night. We will go out for dinner or bring it in. We still find conversation and being together are something to enjoy. There are times we do things in the afternoon or an occasional weekend away. There are some pretty boring young people who do not even do what we do. I still like being with my wife so I don’t care!

jobo February 13, 2013 - 10:12 am

Haha! I love this – the part about making plans on Sunday AFTERNOON! GASP! M and I fall into this here and there, usually because we want to hibernate winter away! AND because we are house fund saving like whoa right now, but we DO try to go out once a month at least, and we are always making dinner plans (in) with my sister and brother in law or some close friends. But I do now more prefer to eat in on weekends and be IN than out. That’s more a once in awhile than an every weekend thing usually 😉

Anne @ ImpulseSave February 13, 2013 - 7:54 am

This perfectly describes my husband and me. But the truth is, I think all of our friends are in the same boat, we just all pretend like we still go out. We should all give up the charade and just embrace our old married couple-ness!

SavvyFinancialLatina February 13, 2013 - 7:48 am

LOL it’s okay. We are 22 and 23, and stay at home all the time. We actually live walking distance to a bunch of nice restaurants and bars, but we just stay at home all the time.
We are so incredibly tired from all the weekly activities, it’s just easier and much more fun to chill.
I used to be obsessed that we were a boring couple that did nothing, now i just don’t care.

Kendal February 13, 2013 - 7:41 am

I can empathize! My husband and I have been married almost 7 years but we’re still young, and yet 9pm is when we start thinking about hitting the sack and we’re usually there before 10pm. We never go out and in fact, we have dinner at roughly the same time every weeknight.

Having recognized this pattern, I’ve made a concerted effort to make plans outside our home recently. This Valentine’s Day we’re actually going out, something we haven’t done since we dated. I’m constantly looking for things for us to do together and sometimes it’s harder than it should be!

On one hand, staying home and enjoying each other’s company is nothing to be ashamed of. However, it can quickly turn into a rut if you let it, and keeping things fresh is important. It’s all a balancing act — just make sure it doesn’t tip to one side for too long!

Christne February 13, 2013 - 7:09 am

We’re totally in the same boat. On the rare occasion we do go out, we’re so tired by 11 that we feel like we’ve stayed out all night. lol

Budget & the Beach February 13, 2013 - 7:04 am

Well I’m single and I do that, which is probably sadder! lol! I’m kidding sort of. When I was in my 20’s and 30’s I did go out a lot more. For me going out now means more day stuff, like beach volleyball when I could play, or a late afternoon beer and burger at a pub. But between this new found frugality and the injury (and working from home), I’m kind of sick of being here. Anyway, make sure you do make an effort to get out, even if it’s for a drive or heading to the beach to relax. Don’t get burned out or stuck in a rut.

Michelle February 13, 2013 - 6:34 am

Ha this sounds like us! We go out a decent amount still, but I’d rather sit at home and do nothing.

pen || new york nonsense February 13, 2013 - 6:30 am

This is so us! We usually can persevere over choosing the couch if mexican food and margaritas is involved though (our Vday plans). We go through stages though & lately (with Winter, especially) we are just like, “buh, I’m tired. Let’s go home.” We even turned down an after-party the other day to go home and watch SNL.

Kelly February 13, 2013 - 6:17 am

We find ourselves in that routine from time to time, but we do strongly believe in making the effort to get out and connect outside of the home. Finding ways to have a date night without spending too much money can be a challenge. Im a firm believer we need to make the effort to get out of the house to connect at least once a week to keep us connected and for a well deserved break from the grind (sleep, work, gym, dinner, tv, sleep…boring!).

Shaba February 13, 2013 - 5:46 am

So familiar.
Typically we try and see friends at least one night a week, and I do my own thing a few times a month (open mic Monday’s, book club, poetry classes).
Zach is far more of a homebody, which is really strange considering he’s the outgoing one and I’m the introvert.

Right now I’m feeling very wanderlust-y, we haven’t gone somewhere new since last July and I just want to go explore a new place. The problem is we’re trying not to spend a bunch of money and travel tends to be pricey. I’ve found a few day trips I’d like to go on, now it’s just the process of scheduling them.

Katrina February 13, 2013 - 5:01 am

Yup, that’s my husband and me. However, I’m not much of a night person to begin with and will inevitably start feeling tired about 10:00 wherever we are (this happened while I was a single college student as well!). I also think that there’s nothing wrong with enjoying each other’s company without doing something exciting. 🙂

P.S.–I have enjoyed reading your blog over the past few months!

MakintheBacon$ February 13, 2013 - 4:52 am

Yes and we’re not even officially married. Its hard to go out on Fridays after a long, grueling work week. We often just stay home and relax. The weekends are meant for catching up on sleep and running errands. At least for us. 🙂

Mary Rhodes February 13, 2013 - 4:27 am

Sounds like my sister!!

Mrs. Pop @ Planting Our Pennies February 13, 2013 - 3:50 am

Haha, I like it. We definitely live like an old married couple, but we’ve been this way since we were 22, so what the heck, right?

Laura / NMS February 13, 2013 - 1:12 am

Yes, but in a way I like it! We’re happy living like we do and savings towards our goals 🙂


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