When we’re hanging out with our best friends, we tend to want to keep the fun going and be with them for the rest of the day‒ and the same goes with dating. When we meet someone whom we genuinely care about or someone we truly love, we have the urge to keep things in contact and make things official. Many may have fantasized about the future. Where they’ll live, how many kids they want, their marriage vows, and such. But before we hop into that, did you ever wonder how many dates should it take before you make things official?
The truth is, there are no real numbers to it.
Each person has different ways of interpreting and showing love. Each relationship differs from one another, and it will always depend on how both people carry one another. It’s about what you feel for the person you are dating, and there’s no competition towards making the relationship official. Some may work for others which may not work for you, and vice versa.
For example, some relationships go official only after a few dating shots, while some go stable after months and months of dating and meeting. There are also cases where people click just after one date. No matter how immature or silly it may sound, it happens. Some think that even six to seven dates are still not enough to know someone deeply. Although there is no magical estimation to it, you have to ask yourself how sure you are about your other half because others often have a hard time identifying if they are official or not.
According to Claire Stott, a relationship psychologist, you’re perfectly entitled to get some answers after a couple of months. Many people have to throw themselves in a relationship even though they aren’t ready yet, and such things can cause a fizzle in the relationship midway. If you’re really into the person, though, you might want to consider something. See, if someone isn’t taking the time to get to know you properly, they’re probably not into you in a severe manner yet. “A lot of it is to do with trust, and how confident you are, and if they’re on the same page as you,” Stott said. “If you really don’t trust them and you think they’re definitely dating other people, they haven’t deleted dating apps on their phone… it sounds like you’re not that committed to each other.”
A simple way to work it out is to ask yourself thoroughly, “do I like the person?” “do I see myself in a long-term relationship with someone like this?” “Is he/she serious about me?” And if you think that the answers are positive, you are in the right mind to create a conversation to strike and approach its exclusivity. If you’re not sure about your answers, work your way out and reconsider a few kinds of stuff. You can also try to introduce your partner to your friends or tell them you’re official to see how they react to it. Your friends often serve as your eyes because they can observe how your partner treats you when you’re together and when you’re not. They are the ones who see if they flinch or get shy when you call your partner “boyfriend” or “girlfriend.”, and they have the observation position because they’re one step away from your rose-colored lenses.
If it’s still not enough, you can talk to each other and be transparent about what you both want to do with your relationship. Communication and comprehension are the keys to most things. Look at the time you spent together, the timeline, and turn it into words and actions. It will be easier if both of you are running on the same page of your book. You need to make sure that they’re even interested in exclusivity.
You can also discuss your future together if it would help in confirming whether both of you are on the same phase or not. It’s somehow essential to see if the person you’re dating has brought up your future at all as a couple. For example, if your partner gets excited over naming kids and thinking what features they’ll be getting from both of you, or if he excitedly speaks to their friends and family about their plans with you. Can you see your future with them? That’s also a bonus to take into consideration when deciding. According to Conti, “Once you get into your 20s, the whole boyfriend/girlfriend label takes on a bit of a more serious role. When you commit to being someone’s boyfriend or girlfriend, you are saying to them and to the world that you could potentially see someone more serious come of the relationship.”
Not to sound like a broken record, it all goes down to how sure you are about your emotional connection with yourself and your partner. Some people will consider themselves to be officially in a relationship after a handful of dates and meet-ups because the number of dates would mean differently for you and to others. We can hope that the other person would be on the same wavelength as you. Still, it would be safer to give space to your relationship before committing to something because recklessness can stir many unwanted emotions and problems and cause a real strain and dent on things.
The person who doesn’t feel ready might feel under pressure to commit, which may cause them to pull themselves out, and that’s why it’s crucial to gain a bit of space and perspective before diving into commitment after dates. Some never made it official but are in a long-term relationship, and some happened after the first two and three dates. When it comes to making a relationship ‘official’ – whatever that means to you is what matters. There is no correct recipe for creating and formulating an official relationship. It’s hard to know when the time is ‘right,’ but the transparency will definitely help.