My passion is writing about love, sex, dating, and relationships. I write based on my own personal experiences and those that I relate to.
How do you know when your relationship is ready for the next level (exclusivity)—after dating for several months? Obviously there needs to be an official conversation that takes place, however, there are also tell-tale signs that your relationship is already heading in that direction, making the "talk" seem less scary.
It feels wonderful to date a guy where there is a physical and mental connection, add emotional and spiritual—you have won the jackpot! As you spend more time together, developing a stronger bond on all levels, it is inevitable that the time will come when your relationship will move to the next level. How do you really know when the timing is right to move your relationship to the next level? If your relationship is ready? Or, are you possibly rushing too quickly?
If you have been dating steadily for more than two months (preferably three to four), you can usually be safe in saying that "rushing" is probably not what you are doing. However, on the flip-side, if you have been dating a guy more than four months and the "exclusivity" talk has not come up, or has been conveniently avoided—you might be dating a "lifetime-dater"—a guy who is fine with only dating you, but will never commit or solidify the relationship. Yikes! Also, if you have been dating a guy for only a few days, weeks, or one month and you are talking commitment—things might be moving too quickly.
Rushing into a relationship can be easy to do, when you don't take time to savor the dating experience. Most couples who rush into relationships do so for many reasons:
- Caught up in the romantic honeymoon stage and think that by rushing to the next level it won't go away? Wrong!
- Either one or both people are afraid to be alone.
- Mesmerized by the idea of the person—looks, how they dress, etc., versus who they really are.
- Their "representation" (putting best foot forward) is a great dream seller—making you feel as if you have found the one, even though most likely you have not, since the "real" person is nothing like the representation.
- There is a strong chemistry right away, and you are afraid you may never again feel this connection.
Every time I have rushed into a relationship it has not worked out. By rushing, I did not give myself time to really get to know the guy (that I barely dated), or for him to get to know me. I've said this in other articles—there is a reason for the order of things: dating, exclusivity, boyfriend/girlfriend, fiancé, marriage, and then kids—if you both want them. When you skip over the order, it usually does not benefit anyone and the relationship does not have a chance to grow.
When you were young—you wanted to rush to be an adult, and when you got there you wished that you were not in such a hurry. As an adult (especially women)—you want to rush to get married, and then seem shocked when relationship after relationship keeps failing or ending in divorce.
If you can enjoy the experience of each level—immersing and taking your time, you can potentially have a better feeling of where the relationship is ultimately heading.
When you rush into the next level of a relationship without fully knowing someone, you don't have a sturdy foundation to land on when something happens to test the relationship—and one day it most definitely will. All relationships will eventually go through an unexpected rough patch, that is how you know if the person you are with is really meant for you. These patches can vary from a family death for either of you, a job change, sickness, financial change, friendship
challenges or anything else that causes major stress and upset you. Whatever it is for you,
a true test of the intentions of a man can be found in the way he handles himself in these situations.
If your relationship has survived several months of dating as well as a very challenging experience, then you just may have a keeper—making you feel like you are ready for the next stage of your relationship. So how do you know if he might be ready?
Signs that your relationship could be moving to the next level:
- You've been dating for several months and the emotional bond keeps getting stronger.
- There has been a crisis in your life—he was there for you, very supportive and hasn't run away.
- Sex keeps getting better and better and better...
- You're able to be 100% yourself around him and he hasn't run for the hills or tried to change you.
- He is still making just as much effort to plan dates as he did in the beginning.
- There has been a noticeable increase in your communication with him.
- He takes any allergies you have seriously—when you're at his place or when you go out.
- You have met each others families—including kids if either of you have any.
- He values your time—making sure that he plans time to see you at least once during the week as well as a weekend day (minimum).
- You spend long weekends together and don't get sick of each other.
- In public he has no issues holding your hand and being affectionate.
- He plans a trip for the two of you.
- Neither one of you are dating other people.
- Everything with him feels secure and easy.
- There is no drama.
- You find that with him, you seek less/no dating advice from your friends.
- You have chemistry that keeps on building.
- You communicate in a loving respectful way towards each other.
- He's consistently doing the little things—opening car doors, buying you flowers, dinners, etc. to make you feel special.
- He is constantly learning about you—how you take your tea/coffee, what you like to drink (wine, mixed drink, etc), favorite dessert, flowers, etc.
- He wants you to be there for special events and things going on in his life.
- There's no fear of confrontation—and he is always respectful.
- You have met his friends and he has met yours.
- He goes out of his way to help you out when you need him—driving you or a friend to the airport, taking/picking you up from dentist/doctors, etc.
- He's there for you when you're sick
- He acknowledges when he's upset you—has no issues apologizing and admitting his own faults.
I am sure that there are many more signs that are not listed—these are just the top 26, however, you can not know 100% the direction that your relationship is heading, without having "the talk." If you have said yes to most of the things on this list—mostly likely you are on the right track. Hurray!
Ladies, At the end of the day, actions always speak louder than words—are you paying attention or just making excuses? When you can open your heart to love and all the possibilities, then love will come in. Always be clear about what you want and if he is also on the same page. If he is not, know when to walk away. Remember, you deserve to be with a guy who wants to take it to the next level with you....and does everything in his power to make it happen.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Stephanie Bailey (author) from Denver on September 04, 2014:
Mary, thank you for reading and a man will need to write a counter article to answer that question. ;)
Mary on September 01, 2014:
Interesting observations. What expectations does the man have ? Just wondering.