It seems that every week a new blog is circulated vitally via social media regarding dating or marriage advice. The captions with the post often are ‘Amen’, ‘Preach it!’, ‘I want this’. Many of these blogs don’t dive too deep past the surface of their topic, and from that vantage point every bloggers opinion seems like a great fresh approach to relationships...mainly because our image only society (meaning JPGS and MP4s) doesn’t really know how to analyze thoughts anymore past the 2 dimensions. As a result, we get 2-D topics.
As co-host of the Love Bent and Adventure Bound radio show on Charleston’s local internet station, Kinetic HiFi, I along with my guest often explore these blog notions deeper. You can catch some of the archives if you want some entertainment. The show is billed as an exploration of living and dating on purpose. And we have always meant it to be for all stages in a relationship.
So, I found it very intriguing that as this blog about a married man dating his wife was so popular. Isn’t that how it is supposed to be? The cleverly titled piece may help with it’s popularity, but the comments attached to the postings of this are different. “Oh so sweet”, “I never want to stop dating”, “My bf and me don’t even go on dates after only 8 months”. Where did the pursuit stop? Why? I don’t know if it is a brain wiring thing or something else but this does not compute. I love planning dates and being creative.
Before you start checking my man card, check out the website this blog is attached to. I am not an artsy guy, I am actually not very organized or detailed in my personal life. But with the training as an engineer, I take the approach to date planning as problem solving/solutions finding. Meaning I get to use my brain to orchestrate something that creates the emotional responses desired. To some that may be an infuriating statement, but you are one of those surface readers I mentioned before. Pure psychology states we do everything because we want to. Even with a gun against your head, you are choosing not to have the alternative. If you want to fill her need for quality time, don’t go to a movie, plan a walk or hike or painting class that is several hours of contact and communication. And if you are planning dates because society says to and that is why you hate it, take a moment and reflect on what it is you want from the date/relationship/marriage. Approach dating from a new angle. Are you both coffee drinkers? Why not create the adventure that the next X amount of dates are all about finding out which local place has the best coffee. That will provide new scenery and automatic substance to cover while sipping the Joe. If you want to add a little extra spice, bring a travel board game or play hangman on a napkin.
So for me, as I have interviewed and researched successful marriages, one of the number one things they have in common is date night/continual dating. Just eating together or running errands does not a date make. Dates are intentional and deliberate...on purpose. That does not mean spontaneity and randomness don’t count...they are the proverbial cherry on top of a healthy dating relationship.
If you and your significant other’s schedule require planning that a certain night of the week is always date night, that is ok. But once in a while spring an extra date in there to add some unexpected in there. A great way to plan together is collectively create a list of things you like doing together, or separately, as well as all the places you want to visit in your city and nearby. But why stop there, maybe create a destination list of 300 miles for weekend getaways. Call it the dating bucket list.
What happens when planning or being creative isn’t just you? What if neither of you can think outside of dinner and a movie? Sure you can google ideas and check Pinterest, but what if someone could do it for you and you get all of the credit?
Well, as an adventure consultant, that is something I can do for you. I thoroughly enjoy the process of planning events/dates and customize them to you and your area. You don’t have to be in beautiful Charleston, SC looking for something to you, I can plan dates for you virtually anywhere. That is how adding a third person can improve your relationship and be their for your Bachelor Party or Bachelorette Party whichever the case may be.
Ladies, he won’t get jealous. Guys, I am a great wing-man! I’ve got the testimonials to prove it, a real life Hitch.
It’s simple. Send an email to
So whether you need help with Valentine’s Day or you just moved to a new city and don’t know what it has to offer I can help. I have also been involved with proposal planning.
What other’s have said:
“It's hard to meet people these days; and when you do, the first date can be the key to showing someone who you really are. The typical dinner and movie can fall flat when it comes to showing real personality so it's nice when someone puts thought into doing something different. I was not expecting my date to show up with two big pumpkins and carving kits on a beautiful fall day for our first date. It was a really fun and cute idea. We got to laugh and show a little bit of our creative side, or lack thereof in my case! It enabled us to talk and have a little fun while not feeling so formal and worrying about saying the exact right thing like you feel when you are at a dinner for the first time. A little thought and creativity can go a long way when you're trying to impress someone!” – Claire, Nurse, NC
"Fun, Engaging, Relaxed,Flirtatious and Well-Planned are all words that come to mind when I think of dates planned by Ben-Jamin Toy. If you are looking for your run-of-the-mill dinner and a movie, you'll have to look elsewhere. Toy's dates are adventurous enough to ensure a memorable experience as well as tailored enough to ensure that memory is a positive one! Going on dates planned by Toy is always relaxing and interesting, creating an awesome atmosphere to really get to know another person." - Annette, College Counselor, SC
I wanted my first Valentine's day with my wife to be special. After asking questions about things she likes, Ben put together a package that covered every detail. From the perfect sushi spot to remembering to bring old clothes, champagne, strawberries, cheese, and crackers to our painting class, he made sure I didn't forget a thing. Most stress-free and romantic Valentine's ever. Joe, Business Owner, DE