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Nowadays, relationships move much more fluidly between. We have more freedom to focus on what we need from our romantic connections - rather than feeling obligated to just slap a ring on it and get down to baby-making. Because of these new dating parameters, defining a relationship can be tricky.
We all love the excitement of dating someone new, but when the time comes to get serious with one person and one person only — things can get a little complicated. Now, relationships can mean marriage, babies and lifelong commitments.
What exclusive dating really means, versus being in a relationship
Remember when Jed from this past season of The Bachelorette botched his engagement with Hannah because he was clearly in a relationship before coming on the show, and uh, told her after the proposal? Needless to say, they said their goodbyes to each other.
Are you just talking? Hanging out? Having fun? How do you introduce this person if you run into someone from high school?
How long you should date before becoming official might surprise you
Gah, the anxiety. Relationship ambiguity can be mind-boggling.
Lo and A-Rod went from dating exclusively to a couple to about-to-be married. Their fascinating relationship timeline, here:. Your goal is to be committed to each other in a monogamous relationship, but you still have to test drive things out a bit longer. You know, just to be sure.
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You gotta make sure the other person is okay with sleeping with the fan on or your strict reality TV schedule, you know? The main thing is, you see potential and are mutually willing to work toward a future to see if you're truly compatible. This exclusive-dating process means your lives are starting to become naturally more entwined. Maybe you start hanging out with his friend group regularly on weekends, or you bookmark a funny meme to send him later because it reminded you of him.
All that said, exclusive dating does not mean that this person is your boyfriend or girlfriend. That role requires legit responsibilities and a shifting of priorities—namely, putting your bond together before other commitments. Oh, and while you're at it: Exclusive dating isn't something you want to assume or infer is happening. Trust your intuition, but know that hearing is way more reassuring. An actual monogamous relationship takes exclusivity a step further, when you can commit to a future with this person.
Of course, these life elements take some time to build up to, as well.
You also should feel more comfortable in your skin and willing to share more of yourself and your time with this person—since, you know, you've made a commitment to them. You might notice that bae starts asking you to spend way more nights over their place, even on gasp work nights, or wants you to meet their parents.
How many dates is enough before a relationship becomes exclusive?
Or perhaps they offered to take care of your car repairs, taking on your finances as their own to some extent. Either way, at the end of the day, you need to verbally communicate what you want to the person you're dating to see if they're on the same swoon-level as you.
Being vulnerable? But the transition doesn't need to be scary.
How soon is too soon to become exclusive?
While at dinner, let them know how happy you've been with the way things are going, and—yes, this requires vulnerability—you think there's something real here. You can wait for them to respond before taking the convo deeper—but don't be afraid to tell them how you really feel about them and your connection. You could also try a more casual approach: "Hey, I've been so happy with things lately that I've found myself gushing about you to my friends. But I don't know what I should be calling you—what do you think?
Either way, as long as you're honest about what you want, you're that much closer to getting it. Rejection sucks.
How long should you date before becoming exclusive?
I know. So even if the thought of taking the next step toward love with another person scares the bejesus out of you, at least you'll be showering yourself in the type of affection that matters most: yours. Weight Loss.
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