Monday, 16 September

These are the signs you’re ready to define your relationship

Life Style
The stages of dating – from just texting to seeing each other to being in a proper relationship – are complicated.

Your parents might remember the glory days of courting progressing straight to getting engaged, but in these modern times packed with endless choice and hookup apps, things aren’t so simple.

You can be talking, texting, dating casually, and until you have ‘the talk’, exclusivity isn’t the expectation. These days we have to DTR – define the relationship.

But when should you do that? If you chat about where things are going too early on, you may give the impression that you’re desperate for lifelong commitment.

Leave it too late and you could end up in the horror of a situationship, with no way out of misery-inducing commitment without actual, proper commitment.

A new study of 2,000 people provides some insight, revealing the signs that indicate it’s time to DTR.

The survey, conducted by OnePoll on behalf of sex toy brand EdenFantasys, found that four in ten of those surveyed waited too long to label their bond, meaning their prospective partner went and hooked up with someone else. Not ideal.

There’s no set timeline, unfortunately, as everyone’s relationship is different. For 73% of those surveyed, the first kiss came before they labelled their relationship, 60% said they’d had sex pre-labelling, and 50% have said ‘I love you’ before clarifying what they are to each other.

So rather than waiting for a specific deadline, it’s best to suss out how you feel. Sorry.

You confide in them You no longer go on dates with anyone else You’ve told family about them They’re all you think about You’re constantly texting/talking You start planning a future with them You genuinely want to know how their day was You’ve told friends about them You’ve met their friends and vice versa.

The idea of commitment no longer scares you The signs to indicate readiness to DTR that popped up most frequently in the survey included confiding in a person, no longer going on dates with anyone else, and telling your family about them.

It’s pretty simple: If you want to treat someone as your significant other, it’s probably wise to talk to them about your relationship. If you’re happy keeping things casual, cool. If the idea of them smooching someone else makes your stomach feel funny, it’s time for a proper talk.

Annabelle Knight, sex and relationship expert at Lovehoney, told Metro.co.uk: ‘The hope is that you will naturally evolve into this situation. You like each other so much you both want to tell your friends and family that you are an item. ‘That is one of the nicest early stages of falling in love.

‘If there is some awkwardness about making that announcement – perhaps changing your status on Facebook or using the words ‘boyfriend’ or ‘girlfriend’ around other people – that would ring a few alarm bells with me because it is a sign that you are not communicating as well as you should and that you’re probably not on the same page. ‘The crunch time in a relationship where you both decide whether you are exclusive can happen any time from the first date to weeks later when you have been dating regularly but are both wary of commitment. ‘No two couples are the same, and we all want different things at different times in our lives. ‘Forget about ‘three date rules’ or timeframes for commitment dictated by society and just do what you feel is right for you.’ Anabelle has four rules for defining the relationship and making things exclusive. First, do it person, second, keep the conversation comfortable, open, and honest, three, go in with an idea of what you want, and four, set your own time frame. Easy.

Source: Metro.co.uk

Source: Emmanuel Mensah