Dating is complicated. There is no specific rule book when it comes to dating; however, we are filled with pervasive societal messages that dating looks a specific way. For instance, there are assumed rules around how long we should wait for a call, who should ask who out on a date and how long you should wait before y’all progress to the next level.
Sis, to be real I’m not a fan of these “rules” because you have a whole life that only YOU know about. So think about that when applying these so called dating “rules”.
What are your personal values?
What is your job status?
Do you have children or not?
All of these things matter.
I’m sorry but there is no step-by-step guide to dating. Although we are made to believe that dating goes something like this…
First, you express interest in someone. Then this interest continues to develop and y’all decide to enter into a committed, monogamous relationship. From this committed, monogamous relationship, y’all may decide to cohabitate and then the next ideal step is engagement. Finally, y’all get married and live happily ever after.
That’s cute. But that’s not real life for most people. Not only does this assume that you have to progress to the next step to reach your ultimate level of happiness, but it also assumes that everyone’s end goal is marriage.
In real life dating and relationships are very much a process and a messy one at that. Letting go of the proposed step-by-step guide and living in the moment takes the pressure off of you and your partner to do things a certain way and by a certain time.
Let’s keep it real…
Relationships are complicated.
There is so much to getting to know another person. Also, the hopes are that you and your partner will continue to grow with each other and relate to each other in multiple ways…you know homie, lover, friend.
Relationships change over time.
We do not just get with someone and things never change. I don’t know about you but if that was the case I would be singing “to the left to the left”. I don’t have time for that life.
Relationships should be co-created by you and your partner.
Not what society says, your best friend or your mama say your relationship should be. You and your partner are in this thing together; therefore, figure out what makes y’all happy…what are y’all most comfortable with….and establish your own boundaries with each other. The narrative of what a monogamous relationship looks like isn’t a one size fits all. Does it even have to be a monogamous relationship at all? That’s a post for another day.
Relationships are an experience.
We treat relationships like we are following a script. That’s not useful. Instead, we should allow ourselves to be present in the current state of the relationship. If we focus too much on how we want things to be or how thing were we cannot fully accept and deal with where things currently are.
The moral of the story: Stop letting others dictate your experiences with dating and relationships.
What are some other realities of relationships that I missed?