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So, you've been seeing someone new for a couple of months, and it's starting to make you think that maybe what you two have going could actually become a thing. If you suspect they might be displaying some signs they are committed, but you haven't had an exclusivity talk, then it's probably time to start reading a bit deeper into their behavior.
Once you've reached the point where either one or both of you is starting to really, really like each other, it's not uncommon to notice a shift in the dynamics — although plenty of people know from the get-go that they are really into someone, and the confident ones aren't afraid to make their intentions known from jump-street. While of course there's no way to 10 percent confirm someone's true feelings aside from biting the bullet and having "the talk," there are some clues that may give you the confidence boost needed to start a dialogue. Elite Daily spoke with dating expert and licensed marriage therapist Anita A. Chlipala to get her input on behaviors that may signal serious interest.
1. There's No Guesswork
According to Chlipala, if someone is in the mindset of having a relationship with you, then there should be little to no anxiety or uncertainty about their true interest level. In the first few weeks of seeing someone new, it's totally natural to feel ripe with anticipation, wondering where things could go. But if the weeks go by and you continue to feel unsure of where you stand, then this could mean they want to keep their other options open.
2. They Make Themselves Consistently Available
Anyone who's feeling particularly committed won't be afraid to make themselves regularly available to you. At this point, there should be no wondering who's turn it is to text or "playing hard to get."
"They are consistent and reliable in their contact, so you don't wonder when you're going to hear from them next or when your next date will be," says Chlipala.
We're all busy, but when someone is really interested in having a meaningful relationship, they will make a considerable effort to include you in their day-to-day lives by staying in contact, notes Chlipala.
3. They Talk About The Future
If someone is interested in something long-term, they are definitely going to be including you in plans in the potentially not-so-near future. Dropping hints, like inviting you to an upcoming family event or suggesting you come as their plus-one to a work function next month, shows that they want to make it clear that they see your relationship lasting for lengthier stretch of time, compared to someone they would be casually dating on the side.
"People who are scared of commitment will hold off on introductions to important people in their life," says Chlipala.
4. They Aren't Seeing Other People
Think about the last time you were really into someone, like all-of-the-other-attractive-likable-people-in-the-world-don't-really-matter-to-me-anymore kind of into someone. Anytime someone is on the cusp of diving into any kind of monogamous relationship, there is usually a point where they stop seeing other people out of their own volition. Once you've started to fall for someone, chances are you're probably not going to be taking advantages of other dating opportunities, says Chlipala.
"They may tell you they aren't seeing other people or have no interest in seeing others. This doesn't necessarily qualify as exclusivity, but gives you an idea that it is something they may want from you," notes Chlipala.
5. You've Established Some Form Of Emotional Intimacy
This is a big one. It can be easy to forget how important it is to develop a sense of trust and emotional understanding early on in relationships because frankly, being honest about what's going on inside is scary. It requires quite a bit of vulnerability and bravery — probably too much to muster for someone you're just interested in seeing casually. If you have shared a decent amount of personal stuff (i.e., past relationship drama, fears, and hopes for the future), then this could be a sign that there is a deeper connection developing, which could mean there's some commitment on the horizon.
Although in the end, every person and relationship is different, there is never any reason to undercut what you really want for the sake of making it work with someone who doesn't want what you want.