Long dating before talk
I learned that girls who wear striped knee socks are trouble, yes, but I continued to make assumptions about exclusivity up until my 30s, and usually ended up the ass who got my feelings hurt.
When we finally became exclusive, I thought all this anguish was worth it.
Right after we went on our first date, I met another guy at a wedding I attended.
We exchanged numbers, I heard from Wedding Guy a few days later and he informed me that he was having surgery and would be out of commission for a few weeks.
Open, honest communication is the key The “exclusivity” talk is an important one, but not one that can be defined perfectly with an exact amount of time.
I am boring you with the details of my dating life/neurosis. Point being: I was waiting for someone else to make a decision about what felt right for me. This time, I decided I was waiting for no one, I would make my decision based on what felt comfortable to me, regardless of what Sixth Date Guy was doing. Maybe Sixth Date Guy wouldn’t have made the same decision as me if he had been in a similar situation. He can date other people if that’s what he needs to do.
I contacted Wedding Guy and told him the truth: That since we’d met, I’d been spending time with someone else, and it felt wrong for me to go on a date. And I can NOT date other people if that’s what feels right to me. There is no right decision you can make, in regards to dating other people, that will make you feel any less vulnerable when getting to know someone. But this I can say for sure: Being honest about what feels right to you makes it way easier to sleep at night.
In my last relationship, for example, I continued to date a number of guys up until the very day we had THE TALK, three months into dating.
In that time, I racked up six more dates with First Date Guy, making him Sixth Date Guy. When Wedding Guy was healthy and called me to make a date, I panicked. Did that mean I was more into him than he was into me?It felt way too soon to have the exclusivity talk with Sixth Date Guy, but too far in for me to go out on a date with someone else. Was I going to ruin everything by making the wrong decision? Here’s what I came up with: I was approaching this dating dilemma in the wrong way. I was dating multiple people preemptively, to avoid getting hurt or I was assuming exclusivity until the guy confirmed otherwise. Sixth Date Guy is following what feels right for him. You may be spending every weekend at his place and making stupid shmoopy eyes at each other over dinner and playing tonsil hockey in the park like teenagers, but that DOES NOT make him your boo. I thought somehow, this dating lots of people thing and not committing myself too soon was supposed to make me feel more powerful. It made me feel like even more of an ass, just in a different way.At least not until you’ve discussed it and have both agreed upon the terms of service for your relationship. Juggling these guys, sorting through the different shades of caring for them, trying to build a connection with all of them at once, trying to schedule multiple dates per week, left me lying awake at night, exhausted, with my stomach in knots, worrying about hurting someone’s feelings.
But my exclusive guy ended up dumping me a few months later. After all of this, I made a decision for myself: I can only date one person at once.
That being said, I don’t assume I’m exclusive with that one person. I have been dating someone I really like for about a month now.