Whether you're in a new relationship, or sitting across the table from someone you've been with for years, dinner is always the perfect time to
get closer to your partner, especially if you take the time to ask each other interesting questions. These might include fun conversation starters, to something a bit more personal — and everything in between.
"Dinner is a great time to bond with your partner because it usually involves time spent away from other distractions like work and electronic devices," Jonathan Bennett, relationship and dating expert at
Double Trust Dating, tells Bustle. "You have your partner’s attention and conversation is generally expected."
If you feel like having a chat, take the temperature of the room and go from there. "Big life questions can be a way to take a break from the daily routine," Joshua Klapow, PhD, clinical psychologist and host of
The Kurre and Klapow Show, tells Bustle. "However, if your partner is tired, or if they have had a rough day, they may simply not have the psychological bandwidth to think big." And that's OK.
There's always tomorrow. And there are always lighter questions you can ask each other in the meantime. Whatever the case may be, consider the questions below, which experts say can help
bring you and your partner closer together. 1 "What Was Your Most Embarrassing Moment?"
After asking your partner this question, you'll definitely feel closer simply for knowing something funny about their past. But there can be more to it than that.
"It also can be helpful to see each other as humans with flaws and all," Bennett says. "In addition, it demonstrates that your partner has the ability to look at [their] own life with a sense of humor."
2 "If You Won The Lottery, What Would You Do?"
"How your partner answers this question says a lot about [their] core values and goals," Bennett says. And as a bonus, it can easily turn into an important
conversation about money, which is important if you see yourselves sticking together long-term.
But it can also be fun. "Most people, if they suddenly came into a lot of money, would live the life they truly wanted," Bennett says. This question can spark an interesting conversation about what your partner might do and where they might go, if money were no object.
3 "What's Your Idea Of A Perfect Date?"
This question is helpful in that it can generate
ideas for future dates, Bennett says. But it can also help reveal what you both find romantic.
"People have different ideas of what a date should look like," Bennett says. "Having insight into your partner’s dream date will help you make future dates more fun and meaningful."
This can also be a great time to
talk about your love languages, or how you like to give and receive love. Couples who know this about each other will feel closer, since they'll know what the other needs to feel happy. 4 "What's Your Biggest Dream For Us As A Couple?"
If you're in the mood to go deep, consider asking your partner what their hopes are for your relationship now — as well as where they'd like to see it go in the future.
"This is their vision of the relationship," Dr. Klapow says. "It allows them to both state where they want to be but also give you clues as to what is missing in the relationship. It's a great way to get information and see what they are thinking about the two of you as a couple."
5 "What Does Your 'Ideal' Life Look Like?"
This one's similar to the lottery question, in that it will help you learn more about your partner's "dream life." But it can also turn into a more
realistic convo about goals.
"It’s important not only to know where your partner is in their life right now but where they'd like to be," Dr. Klapow says. "You get a glimpse into how close, how far off, how big, or small they want their life to be. You also get a sense of where you fit in."
6 "Who Are Your Role Models?"
If you aren't sure who your partner looks up to now — or who they admired while they were growing up — it might be fun to ask them the next time you're sitting down to dinner.
"Be it a family member, teacher, friend, or community member, there's likely someone who impacted their life in a profound way and [helped] mold them into who they are today," Samantha Morrison, a health and wellness expert at
Glacier Wellness, tells Bustle. "This is a great way to understand the underlying influencers for their thoughts and actions." As well as who and what your partner values. 7 "What Scares You The Most?"
Nothing will bring you closer together than
getting real about fears. As Dr. Klapow says, "You need to understand their limitations and concerns." And what might be fueling your partner's worries.
But you might also want to learn how to help support each other, should these scary situations arise. "Understanding what their fears are and maybe how you can help support them or help them to overcome them will bring you closer together," Dr. Klapow says.
8 "What's One Thing You'd Change From Your Past?" Monkey Business Images/shutterstock
"By asking your partner what they would change if they had a chance, you can learn what they really wanted to do and didn’t get a chance to do," psychic and
spiritual counselor Davida Rappaport, tells Bustle. "Perhaps you can both discuss how it may not be too late for them to change directions and change their life." Or you can discuss ways to keep mistakes from happening again.
But most importantly, you'll feel closer after having such a deep conversation — especially since it can be a tough thing to talk about.
9 "What's Your Favorite Childhood Memory?"
If you don't know many details from
your partner's childhood, use the downtime during dinner to ask a few questions about it — such as what their favorite memory is — and see what they have to say.
"It is very special to learn why certain occasions are imprinted in their memory," Rappaport says. "It can also inspire you to recreate them or create new memories with your partner."
10 "Did Anything Surprising Happen This Week?" Monkey Business Images/shutterstock
"This can be a great way to hear about your partner's week by encouraging [them] to think of something unusual or offbeat,"
Dr. Alyssa Adams, clinical psychologist and relationship coach, tells Bustle. "It brings more to the conversation than just getting a list of tasks [they] completed." And it can be the perfect time to offer support, if need be. 11 "What Makes You 10/10 Excited?"
This question will give "you a window into what your partner has been thinking about but hasn't had the opportunity to share," Dr. Adams says. And, of course, it'll open the floor for you to share what makes
you excited, as well. Because remember, this conversation should go both ways.
By asking a few fun questions during dinner — or making it a tradition to have deeper discussions while you eat — there's no doubt you'll start to
feel closer as a couple.