The issue is, for most, Aikido is typically taught as a principle based methodology and not a RSBD type methodology. Doesn't mean it can't be applicable, but when you start looking at scenarios such as domestic violence defense, rape, defensive tactics, combatives, you have to adapt and tailor your training to address the identified risk and situations...which alas, cuts into your aiki development time.
It really is about priorities and competence of your teacher in what he understands about training in various methodologies.
The Aiki development time is directly integrated into how we execute techniques and move at my school. I strongly believe that working on immediately utilizing developing skills is the best way to get the biggest bang for your buck. We also work on some scenario based stuff where you have to respond from a bad situation that is up close and personal. I do not believe that you necessarily have to sacrifice one thing for the other. I am up front and honest with my students in telling them that this (formal budo training) is not a fast road to effective self-defense. Next time you are in the area, stop by so you can see how those students you met have changes. I hope that you will be pleasantly surprised. They send you and hello as well!