Ah, well, not exactly.
Since every relationship is different, there’s no real “one size fits all” time frame when it comes to having the “are we exclusive” conversation. While many women start thinking about exclusivity after a first date, men don’t. But just because guys are slower to commit, it doesn’t mean he’s not interested. That being said, having dating only a couple of weeks may be a bit soon. My suggestion for the right time to talk about exclusivity is after spending a month or two of actively dating and interacting with each other on a daily basis. This gives plenty of time for feelings to grow naturally.
So, how do you ask a guy about exclusivity? Well, the last thing you want to do is be aggressive, angry, and/or use ultimatums. This approach will not only scare a guy off, but may also make him believe that what he thought was a healthy, budding relationship was too good to be true—and abruptly end things.
Here are some healthy suggestions when bringing up the topic of exclusivity:
1. Don’t hint or be coy about the relationship when you’re leading up to the conversation. You may think you’re laying the groundwork, but hinting is like a foreign language to men. He may even see it as playing games.
2. Don’t force the conversation. While you may be ready to “go for it” on that date you’ve circled in red on your calendar, he may not be ready when you are. Figure out what feels best, which is not always the first opportunity.
3. State the facts. You care for him. Some of his actions seem to show he feels the same way, while others are not so clear. “Just the facts… ma’am.”
4. Don’t argue or toss out ultimatums. That is, unless you're ready to answer. Also, don’t demand that he figures things out by a certain date. Believe me, guys don’t like to be bullied into a relationship.
5. Listen to what he says. If he’s honest about having commitment issues and asks for a little more time, give yourself a mental expiration date, particularly if you think you’ve found Mr. Right (as opposed to Mr. Right For The Moment).
So the moral of the story: A couple of weeks or a month into a relationship may be a bit soon to start discussing exclusivity. While everyone wants to find love, some people have trouble committing, while others are too quick. It’s a balancing act, but with honesty, time and grace, all will be well.
Wondering if it’s time to talk about exclusivity with your guy? Give me a call and let’s find out!