Exclusive Relationship? Be Careful Not to Just Assume So!
I’m sure you’ve heard that old saying “When you assume, you make an A%$ out of both U and ME”.
It’s an oldie but still a goodie.
And it’s certainly extremely accurate. It’s never a good idea to assume anything in life, because there’s nothing in it that is guaranteed.
You only set yourself up for a rude awakening, 9 times out of 10.
Advice on Dating…
But especially when you are dating a man, it’s important not to just assume you are an exclusive couple. When you assume that, it’s a quick road to heart break if your guy doesn’t feel the same way.
Dating someone new can be a giddy time, with both of you caught up in the romance, the physical attraction, the fun.
But men and women are wired differently and men can often be slower to commit to an exclusive relationship for a variety of reasons.
Maybe there are triggers that are turning that old heart light from green to yellow or red. (We talk about the meaning of the heart light and the “Magic Traffic Signals” to get him to commit here.)
Or maybe he’s just not the exclusive type and likes being free to date other women.
Does he want to be exclusive?
Heck, he could even be giving you all the signs in the world he’s not ready to be exclusive and you could just miss them altogether… it’s human nature to see only the things we want to see and ignore anything to the contrary.
Relational blindness seems to be a human foible that can definitely make life interesting!
Even if you feel like things are amazing, that you’re both at one with each other, and that you’re made for marriage and forever… not taking a moment to breathe, clarify where you both stand, and make sure it’s where you both want to be is just a bad idea.
There is absolutely nothing worse than skipping the “exclusive” talk altogether, relying on reading your man’s signals, and then getting it totally wrong.
Maybe his signals were mixed, maybe he’s confused… relying on those signals and then reading them inaccurately only makes you feel like you were cuckolded, or led on, even if that was never his intention.
Then comes the bad blood and hurt feelings between you both and any hope of salvaging even a friendship (should that be something that is important to you) is out the window.
Want to Be Exclusive? Initiate the Talk!
It’s important. Don’t skip it.
Talking about where you stand in a relationship can be scary and feel uncomfortable. But think how much more uncomfy it will feel if you assume you’re both exclusive and then call him up one day to hang out, and he’s busy with another woman.
Or maybe you show up at his house, thinking it’s cool, that’s just what you do… and he’s entertaining someone else. That will feel even more awkward. Not to mention painful.
So take stock of where you both are and the signals you are getting, and then choose a good time to just ask him.
Tips on how to become exclusive in your relationship:
- Ask him how he feels about you.
- Ask him if he’s dating anyone else.
- Ask him if he is ready to be exclusive.
- Or maybe keep it low-key and just ask him what he tells his friends about you.
What he tells his friends about you can speak volumes as to how he really feels about you. When a man is telling all his friends how awesome you are, how he wants to spend all his time with you, and how you’re pretty much the best thing since sliced bread… he’s probably not interested in other women.
Or you can crack a joke and take some pressure off. Crack a joke and ask him how many numbers he got at the bar with his buddy’s the other night… or how many girlfriends he’s got on his roster.
His response to jokes can tell you a great deal as well and it can be an easy transition into the exclusivity conversation.
How Do You Know When To Bring Up Being Exclusive?
Knowing when is probably the easier part of the equation. When you know you can call your guy up at any time of the day or night, and he will be happy to hear from you.
When you both call each other just because, to say you’re thinking of each other, or to say goodnight at the end of the day. When you’ve talked about meeting the parents or even better… met the parents!
There are exclusive dating signs there if you look for them that give you clues as to where you’re going. While you never want to assume you are reading all those signs correctly, if you are definitely seeing them… it’s time to validate them or negate them by being honest and just asking.
The worst that can happen is he’s not ready to be exclusive. Then the ball is in your court to either decide to wait and see what happens or move on to a man that is ready to commit to you and make you number one in his life.
You don’t deserve anything less.
Over to You: Have you made the mistake of assuming something about your relationships in the past? How did that work out for you? I’d love to hear your story in the comments below.