I remember the early days of my relationship with my husband, Bart. We couldn’t fit enough of each other into the days, so we’d stay up all night as well. Lots of sex and… Actually, if memory serves me correctly, there was lots of sex that one time and after that it was mostly about the movies. Lots and lots and lots of movies.
If you ask me, movies and television shows are the perfect shared passion. They’re always available, you can watch them anywhere, there’s an insatiable variety to choose from and you never, ever have to settle for watching just one. Just as well the husband and I are both into them…
Things changed after the kids came along. Seriously, is there nothing about couple-life that’s sacred post-children? Kids steal the time, they steal the hugs, they steal the boobs. Kids interrupt everything we hold dear about being together – our ability to watch a movie without hitting pause every few minutes included. When the kids were babies (and we had three kids four years and under, so babies were what we specialised in for a very long time), a single movie used to take us about a week and a half to watch. Just as we’d settle in with a full wine glass and a deep, deep sigh of contentment, a baby would cry, a toddler or two would appear wide-awake at the door or – more often than not – one of us would promptly fall asleep. Life with little kids is exhausting.
We somehow got through those crazy years. We knew we were going to be okay when a year or so ago we found ourselves bingeing on the box set of Breaking Bad. We could. not. stop. watching. We’d settle in once the kids were in bed (they are eight, 11 and 12 these days), hit Play and basically awake out of our coma hours later, mortified that it was one o’clock in the morning. How did that happen? We’d look at each other and one of us would invariably ask, “Are you tired?” and the other would reply, “I could go one more” and off we’d go, watching “just one more” until the wee small hours.
The sleep deprivation was familiar, if rather more self-induced. It was a bit like being permanently hung over. You know how if you’re sick with gastro and a bad headache you get all the sympathy for being terribly, terribly ill, but if you have a whopping great hangover you get none? Even though the hangover feels worse than the gastro, you know your only option is to take some paracetamol and get on with it. Self-induced suffering is not considered suffering at all.
Sleep deprivation due to box set bingeing (or SDBSB) is a similar feeling. After a steady night of SDBSB, the next day we’ll tell each other “We’re only going to watch one episode, maybe two tonight” (“I’m only going to have one glass of wine, maybe two tonight”), but before we know it we’re so engrossed that we just have to find out what happens next and episode after episode go by in a flash. There is no finer way to miss time passing.
Indeed, we’ve watched quite a few box set series since Breaking Bad. We loved House of Cards with Kevin Spacey. If you didn’t catch the series on television, get the box set and binge. It’s a better way to view it anyway because you don’t have to torture yourself for a full week wondering what happens next. House of Cards does cliffhangers like you wouldn’t believe!
The trick is to get a series you both love. I binge-watched Orange is the New Black, but my husband watched the first two episodes and bailed out, so I was on my own. I missed having my husband to talk to about the series. It’s such a nice way to be together, sharing a common story that you can over-analyse the next day. And I definitely missed having a ‘partner in crime’, urging each other to punch through the SDBSB and watch just one more. So definitely find a series you’ll both be equally into.
Some box set series we’ve both seen and loved, or that we have on our list to watch together include:
- House of Cards (the Seasons 1-3 trilogy is out now)
- Breaking Bad (you can buy the whole series for $180 and I highly recommend it)
- Seinfeld (there are 32 DVDs in the set, so go gently into that good night…)
- Suits (seasons 1-4 are available)
- Downton Abbey (I highly recommend this one to cleanse you after Breaking Bad)
- The Tudors (on our list)
- Outlander (looks so good)
- Mad Men (like the good Don Drapers that we are, we are making this one last)
Right now we are well into Game of Thrones – a tricky one to watch when you’ve got kids of any age. Our children are under strict instructions to knock on the door and wait until called before entering the room. We are understandably paranoid after our eldest, Max, walked in on a full-frontal GoT orgy of some description (certainly I hope Max can’t describe it). We quickly realised that some box sets are more suited to family life than others, but, of course, we can’t stop watching now. Not while Jon Snow is defending The Wall from the Night Walkers while the sado-masochistic king loses hearts and minds in King’s Landing. Bart and I are totally, completely and utterly hooked. It’s a bit like falling in love all over again.
What shows or movies do you enjoy with your man?
Happy Father’s Day to all the dads:
- Dad Dude Food: Movie Night, Dad Style
- 21 Father’s Day Gifts You’ll Want to Keep for Yourself
- Happy Father’s Day: DIY Puzzle Card