It's so easy to get swept up in the rush of lovey-dovey feelings you get from dating someone new. But according to experts, it's pretty important to stay grounded during the first three months of dating. Because as amazing as those new love feels are, those first 90 days can determine whether or not your new relationship is the real thing or has an expiration date. Although every relationship differs, three months is considered to be the average length of the first stage of a relationship. According to psychotherapist and relationship coach, Toni Coleman, LCSW , you should be ideally making that transition from "casually dating" to "exclusive" around that time. But again, this varies depending on how much time you actually spend together and how much distance is between you two.
What Is the Meaning of Casual Dating?
Which Stage of Dating Are You In? | Dating vs. Relationship
Sound familiar? Then you should know the rules of casual dating. But first: What is a casual relationship? The trick is making sure you're both on the same page and each have the same expectations. Spoiler alert: Yes, there are benefits, and not-so-serious relationships are easier to navigate than you think. These casual dating tips will help.
Dating Exclusively Vs. A Relationship: The Difference Between The Two Is Subtle
As if finding love through boundless dating apps wasn't mystifying enough, determining when it's time for you and your S. Whether you're looking to play the field or you're ready to get serious about finding "the one," it helps to have a handy guide that spells out the signs of casual and exclusive dating. As with any type of relationship—romantic or otherwise—keep in mind that it's always important to communicate your expectations and needs to avoid being blindsided. For instance, is "seeing" and "dating" someone the same thing or are they two completely different statuses? And how comfortable are you with setting boundaries when it comes to sex , either with one another or other people?
When my partner and I first got together, I was not ready to lock it down right away. This came about because I was equally tired of both the anxiety of looking for something serious and the dissatisfaction with hookup culture. What I really wanted was something in-between; I wanted the Goldilocks set-up of being exclusive, but not in an official relationship. Ultimately, our super casual relationship did evolve, and we made things official, but I truly believe part of the reason our relationship has gone the distance was that it started off with the intent to keep it casually exclusive. It allowed us to get increasingly emotionally intimate, without the pressure and expectation that naturally comes with the girlfriend title.