Sex & Life
Sex & Life August 15, 2017
Is it time to DTR?
There is a long list of (usually negative) things that millennials are stereotypically known for. Among these being our ever-popular “non-relationships.” Whether we like it or not, the dating world has changed.
Hate to break it to you, but girls are no longer lounging in the park enjoying a picnic and reading their favorite book when their Prince Charming stumbles upon them and asks if they can take them to dinner. Not so happily ever after.
Now, girls are huddled over their phones peering over a shit-quality profile picture, swiping through swaths of men hoping to find a diamond in the rough.
Say one of these Bumble/Tinder/Coffee Meets Bagel dates pans out and results in a few more dates (or if you’re in college, your hookup from last Friday night’s party actually texts you that next week)… so you start hanging out. And you keep hanging out. And now you’ve been hanging out for a while… and you’ve been hanging out often.
Your relationship has followed the natural progression of getting to know someone and starting to like them (despite the mix-up of sleeping with them before going on an official date or going on a date before knowing their last name). You now hang out all the time and it’s been mentioned that you’re exclusive.
But they never asked you to be their girlfriend. So, here you are. You’re officially in a non-relationship (and you’re probably a millennial, because nobody else would have the tolerance for this).
There is so much back-and-forth on what to think about these wishy-washy “non-relationships.” Our generation is so used to it that we hardly realize we’re in this type of a relationship until we’re telling our mom about it and we’re not sure what to call it.
Most of us just summarize it as our boyfriend or girlfriend because that is so much easier for our parents to understand… but is that what they are?
Here’s a quick guide to whether your “non-relationship” needs a label or if you’re well-adapted to our no-label society.
You probably need to define your relationship if…
If you describe your partner to your friends as “practically your boyfriend” or your girlfriends call him your boyfriend because of what you have told them about him, but you catch him referring to you as your “friend,” this is probably a red flag.
I’ve had plenty of friends in my life and usually the difference is clear. If he can’t tell the difference between you and his “boys,” there could be a problem.
Other acceptable things they can call you: my girl, my babe, even “bae” is better than “friend.”
Another similar issue to being called their “friend” is if they truly consider you to be on the same level as the rest of “the guys.” If your guy never prioritize you over the rest of his friends, then he’s probably not thinking of you as much more than a friend.
And you have enough friends. If he’s not placing you first enough, your relationship probably needs some definition. Clearly he’s not thinking of you the same way you’re thinking of him.
Red flag. If every time you hang out it’s in his apartment or his dorm, first, that’s probably not that sanitary, and second, literally why? While the label might not always be the most important part of the relationship, what is important is the quality of time you spend together.
If you have fun with him, but you’re only ever watching movies and hooking up, maybe your relationship needs a change of scenery. Maybe he acts like a complete idiot in public… wouldn’t you want to know that before you started officially dating anyways?
But maybe your relationship doesn’t need a label if…
If he is coming to you just as much as (or more than) you’re going over to his place, this is a good indicator of a balanced relationship. Even though this may be something small, it’s a pretty good sign.
If you’re always the one traveling to him, you’re making it too easy for him. Does he really want to be with you or is he just doing it because it’s easy? He obviously wants to hang out with you if he’s always up to put in the effort to get to you.
Here’s a controversial one. As girls, who basically consider jumping to conclusions as our daily exercise, we assume that if our significant other is not properly and outwardly displaying us, they are obviously trying to hide us.
Even though this is a dramatic and exaggerated response, it does have a little truth to it. Why would they hide you? Now if he hasn’t posted since 2008, you might be an exception. But if most of his boring life is posted on Snapchat or Insta, but you basically don’t exist to everyone else, you might want to reevaluate where you stand.
From my experience, guys aren’t trying to introduce their mom to their latest side-piece. If you have somehow fooled them into thinking you are a classy, appropriate, traditional girl worthy of meeting his mother, congrats, and also, you’re probably pretty important to him.
Even though the dating lines have become exceedingly blurred, what’s most important is how comfortable you feel in a relationship. If you’re constantly on edge that he’s going to go home with a different girl when you’re not there, that’s not a good sign.
But even if you’re relationship doesn’t have a definite label, as long as you feel confident that you’re both on the same page, you’re probably good to go.
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