What Is The Difference Between Dating And A Relationship
Love is like a virus. It can happen to anybody at any time. ~ Maya Angelou (Tweet this)
Some people introduce their partner as their “boyfriend or girlfriend” while others introduce their partner as the “person I am dating.” Both are absolutely acceptable, but there are some difference between dating and relationship. Do you know them?
My few cents about the difference between dating and relationship:
They both go hand in hand, but what is the “actual” difference between dating and relationship? There is not just one difference. There are many subtle differences. Read on to find out what they are.
1. It is mutual
Though this seems obvious, this one is probably the biggest difference between dating and relationship. Dating is great, but each party probably has their own idea about what is happening. While “dating” someone, it might be okay to be dating other people. Unless you two have had some sort of a conversation,
“dating” is not exclusive while being in a relationship is.
Like we mentioned, commitment is the key to having a serious relationship versus dating. Once the two of you are committed to each other, a lot more happens than just casual dating. Sure, commitment means exclusive dating, but it also means a potential future. In a relationship, it is not unheard of to discuss things like living together, marriage, kids, and beyond. While dating, those subjects are not typically brought up for some time. Just remember one thing,
“Love doesn’t mean anything if you’re not willing to make a commitment” (Tweet this)
Though this is not true for every relationship every time, there is a definite difference between dating and relationship when it comes to clarity. While dating, one person may feel one way (exclusive v. open dating) and the other person may feel differently.
While in a relationship, hopefully both people feel comfortable discussing their relationship openly. While just dating, it is hard to sit down and discuss anything in full because of the fear of what the other person is thinking. While in a relationship, you have both already committed to one another, which means the clarity should come easier. With more clarity comes less stress—at least in this area!
Speaking of clarity, communication comes easier in a relationship than it does while dating. Relationships absolutely have their communication issues and of course everyone is different, but there is something reassuring about a relationship.
Little things—like leaving the seat down, or not calling you after work—are things that end up being a tiny bit easier to discuss while in a relationship. While dating, everyone is trying not to step on each other’s toes still. Relationships bring comfort and open communication—hopefully!
Dating implies a certain casual demeanor. Relationships imply something else. While dating a person, you are still prioritizing your life and your friends and your job. While in a relationship, priorities quickly shift and you end up spending more time with your partner.
“The greatest gift you can give someone you love unconditionally is your time” -Unknown (Tweet this)
Both things are great. Dating is great because it is nice to pursue someone while also having time to yourself. Relationships are great because it is really special to have someone to spend all of your time with.
While dating someone, expectations stay low. It is normal for one person to be more into the situation than the other person, but overall, no one is expecting a diamond ring or a mortgage. While in a relationship however, expectations tend to run high.
There is not much of a point in a relationship if there are no huge strides in the future. Sure, relationships are special, but what’s the point of a relationship if neither of you sees it going anywhere?
Dating is for people who are not interested in a commitment. Expectations in a relationship are expected.
Dating is great and it surely satisfies some people, but relationships are different. If you are not finding satisfaction in your relationship, you either need to have a conversation or you need to get out of the relationship. If you are not finding satisfaction in dating, you can simply date someone else or even multiple other people. Being satisfied in your relationship is necessary. Being satisfied in dating is something you choose.
When you are out in the dating field, chances are, your friends are not tagging along with you. When you are in a relationship, it is very common to have your friends with you at all times. There are couples that have mutual friends that they spend their time with often, though there are likely few people dating that are always with their friends.
Once you take “dating” to the next level, there is a level of understanding there, and friends are welcome right into it.
Dating is fun and physical intimacy is definitely achievable during those kinds of casual relationships, however in a certified relationship, it is easier to maintain physical and emotional intimacy. It is important to have a nice balance of both and though I am sure it is possible for couples who are just “dating,” it is definitely more possible for couples who are in a relationship.
Intimacy doesn’t always have to be purely physical. It is a special feel by which you can see into your partner’s soul” -Unknown (Tweet this)
Dating is great and exciting and new and fun. Relationships are familiar and comfortable and peaceful and nice. There is nothing wrong with either, but in a relationship, there is a certain realness. There is no need to go out and see that movie that you don’t want to see in a relationship, though there may be while dating.
There is no need to go out every night to fancy restaurants or dinner parties in a relationship. All of those things are fantastic while dating—after all, it is how you get to know each other! When you make it to “Relationship Status,” however, there is an expectation about just being yourself. Be yourself. It’s okay to get to know the real, real yous at this point.
Don’t worry about the difference between dating and relationship. There is nothing wrong with dating or relationships, in fact, both are incredible. When you are ready to take the person you are dating to the next level, have that conversation and let yourself be vulnerable. Show them you care for them, show off your love for them afterall love is all you need for a relationship which will make you realize that relationships are phenomenal. You won’t regret it.