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Pete Hryciuk and Margaret Russ.Supplied

Who: Pete Hryciuk, 54, chiropractor; Margaret Russ, 45, psychotherapist

Location: Toronto

Relationship status: Together since 2013

Location, location, location

Pete: Five years ago we were both on We both wanted to meet someone close to home so we had both set our selection criteria to a really tight geographic radius. A big part of why I did that is because I had three kids at home. Turns out we had that in common.

Margaret: He sent me a wink or a poke or whatever it is. I said I’m free Friday – cocktails or coffee?

Pete: I remember thinking, awesome! Cocktails, of course.

Margaret: Our first date was at a neighbourhood restaurant. I had a friend’s party that night that was kind of an exit strategy. But then I thought he was pretty cool so I invited him to come. I was impressed that he didn’t need babysitting. He just got in there and chatted with everyone.

Pete: A few of them were my clients! Some didn’t even realize I was separated, so that was awkward.

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Margaret: One of the big things on our first date was realizing that we both have three kids – the exact same ages and opposite genders. And Pete has an Alexander and I have an Alexandra. It was just – wow.

Pete: The Brady Bunch jokes came pretty quickly. We both have a pretty similar approach to parenting, so that helps. I guess I’m probably more of the bad cop, but we’re both cops.

Margaret: All of the kids live primarily with us, so our house can definitely get chaotic – especially if any of the kids have friends over. We both love to cook, which is great because there are a lot of mouths. We have a big dining room table that attaches to an island.

Getting away to keep it together

Margaret: When we got married, we brought everyone down to the Dominican. It was a lot of fun. My mom gave us a piece of advice that really stuck. She said, if you two aren’t good, nobody is going to be good. Make sure to put your relationship first sometimes.

Pete: It’s not easy, but we manage to do that as often as we can. Over the March Break we went to Florida for five days while the kids were with their respective other parents. It was a slice of paradise.

Margaret: The kids are our priority and that’s really our life – being their personal Uber drivers and therapists and financiers and everything else.

Pete: Spending a week without worrying about kid issues is like an emotional reset. We come back totally recharged and ready to get back into it.

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