How Many Dates Before Your Relationship Is Official?

Every couple is different, and communication is key.

Smiling man taking photo of wife with smartphone while sitting in outdoor cafe
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When you’re dating someone you really like and care a lot about, you may feel eager to make things official between the two of you. You may already find yourself fantasizing about your life together as a couple and can’t wait to turn your current dating relationship into a real, committed, and long-lasting relationship. But before you update your Facebook relationship status and start buying monogrammed towels, you both need to be on the same page about where your relationship is going. But how many dates should you have before making your relationship official?

The truth of the matter is that there’s no set time or agreed-upon number of dates to have before making a relationship official. Since each person is different and no two relationships are the same, it has to be what feels right for you and the person you’re dating.

For example, there are relationships that become official after just a few dates, while there are other relationships that become official after a few months. And while it may seem premature, strange, or desperate to want to be official and exclusive with someone after just one date, there are also people who think that having six or seven dates still isn’t enough time needed before deciding to become a couple or deciding to go your separate ways. It simply depends on the situation and the unique romantic connection that you have with your partner.

Communicating Is Key

When you’re ready to have the serious relationship conversation with your partner about your desire to make things official, it’s in your best interest to pay attention to their verbal and physical cues in order to understand their personal dating and relationship timeline, preferences, and style. By looking at the time you spend together with a critical eye and tuning in to your partner’s words and actions, it can be easier for you to see if you both want the same things regarding your relationship status.

Discussing Your Future Together

If you’re wondering how many dates you need to have before making your relationship official, it’s important to see if the person you’re dating has brought up your future at all as a couple. For instance, if your partner has spoken excitedly about introducing you to his family and friends, going on a trip with you, or even what your kids would look like, this is a clear sign that having the relationship talk is something that wouldn’t catch him or her off guard.

When you’re both already able to openly talk about what lies ahead for the two of you, this can be a great segue toward making your relationship official.

Talking About Wanting a Relationship

When you’re trying to figure out how many dates you should go on with someone before achieving official relationship status, you need to make sure that they're even interested in exclusivity. For example, if this person tells you that he doesn't know what he wants in a relationship, is still recovering from a previous breakup, or doesn’t see themself settling down anytime soon, this should clue you in that this person isn’t ready to make your relationship official, no matter how many dates you’ve had together. On the flip side, if this person expresses her interest in meeting someone special and having that level of emotional intimacy and exclusivity with someone, this can be a signal that she would like that with you.

Treating You Like a Significant Other

If you’re wondering how many dates you should have before making your relationship official, you should look more closely at how this person treats you. If you’re filling the S.O. role by constantly texting throughout the day, always having standing weekend plans no matter what, and sharing your thoughts and feelings with one another, you’ve reached the point where making your relationship official is eminent. When you’re unofficially acting as the boyfriend or girlfriend for all intents and purposes, this is the right time for the two of you to have a conversation about making your relationship official. 

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