On many of my platforms I have spoken on my views about dating, and finally here it is in words! Now for my readers who are in happy, healthy relationships, this post isn’t for you. However, you may be able to pass this knowledge on to your single friends who don’t understand the levels of dating.
I am a complete advocate for multi-dating and I feel that many individuals wouldn’t end up in toxic relationships if they understood the purpose of dating multiple people at once. I’m not talking about having a polyamorous relationship, what I’m talking about is strictly dating before getting into a relationship. There’s stages to this, so let me break it down for you.
The first stage is the Talking Stage. This stage is strictly when you meet someone new and you’re just talking. No dates or meet ups, just strictly communicating via text message, FaceTime, phone calls, DM’s, etc. This stage, you’re literally just getting to know about them. Don’t get confused, during this stage you SHOULD be talking to more than one person. You may be asking yourself, “Why? If I talk to more than one person, I’m not putting 100 percent into this new person.” Now let me explain why you’re wrong. Every relationship is different, and you begin to learn more about yourself through each person that you come into contact with.
You start to develop a communication style, in which you better understand how you like to be communicated to. During the talking stage, when talking to multiple people, you start to discern who’s consistent, who checks in on you, and who is genuinely interested in getting to know you. When you are solely focused on one individual in this stage, you begin to ignore red flags because you have no one else to compare to. This can inadvertently lead you to lowering your standards, whereas another individual may be providing more of your needs.
So now you’ve combed through the pact and learn who’s genuinely interested in getting to know you, let’s move on to Stage 2!
Stage 2 is the Dating Stage. This stage is an advanced level of talking, the only difference now is that you are actually going on dates. You have decided that you are interested in getting to know 2 or 3 people and now it’s time for the first date. You already know that these individuals are good at communication otherwise you wouldn’t have advanced to this stage with them. Now it’s all about vibes and connections in person. It is very possible to have chemistry with someone over the phone and through text messages, but in person chemistry is completely different.
During this stage you begin to find out if you are actually comfortable being around this person. Do they make you laugh? Can you guys have fun together? Is the sex good? (This is completely your choice if you decide to do the nasty with them upon dating. This is a judgement free zone so go ahead and explore that sexual chemistry.) You’re also determining if you guys are compatible because you are laying down the foundation for what is possible to come. I strongly believe that having the same foundation with your possible significant other is important because it determines how you’ll navigate through your relationship. Ask the important questions like religious and/or spiritual affiliation, political views, views on children, finances, etc.
Now out of the 2 or 3 people you have dated, you have finally reached stage 3!
Stage 3 is the Dating Exclusively Stage! This is the stage where you have decided to pursue only ONE person. You may ask yourselves, “Well, why are we not in a relationship yet?” That’s because this stage is the test run to a relationship. When you buy a car, you need to test drive it first before you decide to make that purchase, the same goes for a relationship.
In this stage you find out can this person be faithful to just you even though you’re not officially together. You’re still getting to know them but on a completely different, deeper level. Now you’re getting to the root of who this person truly is and if you can see yourself being with them completely, flaws and all. When you truly decide this is the person you can truly see yourself with you move on to the final stage which is a full blown relationship.
For relationships there are only 4 stages, however, for me personally, there are 6 stages: 1. Talking, 2. Dating, 3. Dating Exclusively, 4. Relationship, 5. Engagement, and 6. Marriage.
Not everyone believes in getting married which is why I didn’t include the last two stages. Those are personal choices in which everyone has the right to decide which path they want to go down. However, the idea of marriage should be discussed during the first two stages because once again, that’s determining the foundation.
When it comes to multi-dating, do not feel ashamed of entertaining more than one person. As long as you are open and honest with said people that you’re talking to, there is nothing wrong. Why? Because you let them know and gave them a choice to either stay around or decide that it just isn’t for them. When you allow yourself to talk to multiple people, you learn your likes and dislikes, your love language, your communication styles, what you can tolerate and what you won’t tolerate, etc.
There are 7.5 billion people in this world, put yourself out there and see what they have to offer. You don’t always have to put 100 percent into a person UNLESS you decide that they are worthy of getting to Stage 3 and further. Not everyone deserves complete access to you, always remember that.
Set your standards, and the right one will check off every box of what you NEED, not to be confused with what you WANT.