Making your relationship official is generally a big deal. Being official changes your expectations from the relationship—but the problem is, you and he might have different expectations and different definitions of what it is to be “official.” So, before you make it official and change that relationship status on your social media feeds, here are a few important topics to discuss with him in order to make sure you are on the same page and that you both will be happy with the relationship.
1. Labeling it
Making it official doesn’t mean the same thing for everyone. Are you guys boyfriend and girlfriend? Or is one of you uncomfortable with that label? Some people prefer not to put a label on their relationships, and there’s nothing wrong with that as long as both members of the relationship are happy. Discuss what making it official means to you – you don’t want to make it Facebook official that you’re his girlfriend only to find out from him that he doesn’t actually consider you his girlfriend, talk about awkward!
Having an open relationship is becoming more common in these modern days. An open relationship means that while you and your guy might be officially boyfriend and girlfriend, you are still allowed to see other people. On the other hand, the more traditional closed relationship means you will exclusively date each other. This is a very important thing to discuss with your potential partner—what level of exclusivity are you both expecting to have in the relationship?
Cheating can be a very arbitrary thing, and everyone perceives it differently. For some, they don’t consider it cheating unless sex is involved. Others view even flirty texts with someone of the opposite sex as a form of cheating. Where is the line drawn for you, and what is it for your partner? Discussing this before you become official may save some heartache down the road if one of you unintentionally crosses what their partner views as the line. Knowing each other’s boundaries ahead of time will prevent this.
Sex is considered a normal part of adult relationships. However, once again this can be a sensitive area for couples, and boundaries should be spoken of. Are you both expecting sex out of the relationship? Or is one or both of you wishing to save that intimate activity until after marriage? Likely, there are some things you are comfortable with in the bedroom, and some things that you are not. Discuss this with him, so you both know what to expect to receive on a sexual level from your relationship. Not sure where you stand on this issue? Check out our story on three things to consider before having sex with a guy.
Almost everyone has what are called “deal-breakers” when they are looking for a relationship; those personality traits or habits that are absolutely unacceptable to you. Find out what your guy’s deal-breakers are, and discuss what yours are with him. Maybe you are against dating a smoker and maybe he hates dogs and won’t date someone who has them. On a deeper level, if there is no chance you would ever forgive infidelity or similar transgressions, you should make that clear from the start too. It’s better to find out these things before you’re already committed and falling in love, so you can either compromise or call it off, if need be.
6. Where will your relationship go?
It may seem a little early to discuss things like this, but you should at least know what each other’s expectations are when it comes to marriage. If one of you is totally against marriage and never plan to settle down and get married ever, then out of fairness and respect to them, this is important for the other to know. If one of you has your heart set on getting married in the future but the other partner doesn’t, it’s obviously going to cause a problem in the long-term, and it might be better to learn about this conflict before you’re too invested in the relationship.
The most important thing is to have respect for each other and learn to compromise. Both you and your guy should be happy with the terms of your relationship, or chances are it won’t last as long as you’d like. So learn what he expects from you and tell him what you expect from him. Discuss what you’d be willing to compromise on and what you absolutely will not. Sometimes, it can be easy to tell from the start if the two of you have got what it takes to make it together—but you’ve got to be able to talk about it, first!