I have mentioned that I am 24, single unmarried (wink wink 😉 ) and loving it. I also have some very close friends, all more or less my age. Most of them are dating, in relationships, blah, blah and blah and this whole social charade gets me thinking…. I have a few relationship questions that need clarification. Maybe someone should publish a manual that has in-depth answers. I wonder if the Hitchhiker’s Guide had them.
Dating: When is an appropriate time to start saying you’re dating? One, two, three dates? And, really, what does qualify as dating? Coffee, dinner, movie, drinks, thrown in with copious amounts of subtle flirting and double entendres hidden in every sentence we speak? Then does that mean that some people I know end up dating even their friends (or people they “claim” are their friends) ? A touch here, a naughty smile there, a peck on the cheek that lingered a moment too long? And how long does it take to actually proceed from “a date” to “dating” ?
Relationship: When does it go from “dating” to “being in a relationship” ? Is there an intermediate phase in between these two? And amongst all this confusion when does the first kiss take place? And how long does it take to move from the kiss to other, more interesting things? Does it mean that whoever you’re getting it on with is the person you’re in a relationship with? And what if you’re with them, have all the benefits of a relationship (well, I can only think of one big benefit, but for peace of mind, let’s add the plural) and yet deny ever being in the relationship/going around/blah-bloo-blah?
Commitment: We’ve all heard this word. And in all probability, more often than not we’ve heard it along with the phrase “not ready”. So when does a relationship transform into a commitment? And does making out have any part to play in this? I for one cannot imagine a guy being committed to a girl because she’s mind-numbingly hot in bed/makes love like a tigress. And I do happen to know women who would sleep with men and then claim to be “not ready for a commitment” leaving the guy gaping. But I also happen to know men who do the exact same thing. So what does commitment mean?
Living together: So do you live together once you’ve “committed” to one another? When you’re in a “relationship”? Please tell me you don’t move in together when you’re dating. Does living together require the relationship to pass the above two stages? Or can it be done in between one of these? So does it also signify that your relationship is definitely moving towards marriage? How much time passes between the living-in and the popping-of-final-question? So when you’re living with someone, you’re all but married right? So then why do people break up even after years of living together? And is it allowed to come back with the “no commitment” drill after you’ve lived with someone?
And, the most puzzling question of all…. Where does “love” fit in the grand scheme of relationship-y things? When is an appropriate time to say the dreaded 3 words? How easy or difficult is it to slide from one intense (emotionally and physically) relationship to another while having said (or at least felt) the L-word?
Maybe we should all go back to our parents’ and grandparents’ generations where life was simple and you didn’t have to think so much. Meet boy, parents say yes, you say yes, get married, sleep with the almost-stranger you just married, have kids, live happily ever after.