Y’all, relationships are difficult. Navigating them feels all too similar to escaping Azkaban without a wand. How can you ward off Dementors without the Patronus charm? How do you prevent heartbreak without a love potion?
You can’t. Or, rather, I can’t. You’ve probably married your high school sweetheart, with whom you never get into arguments about the mythological background of unicorns, and are currently living a life of suburban bliss. If so, this probably isn’t the blog for you. My wit and anxiety-borne wisdom have nothing left to teach you, grasshopper. Be free!
Right. So, everybody else, let’s just agree. Dating totally sucks, right? It’s really exciting meeting somebody you like, of course, and there’s that whole kissing thing, which is super fun. It’s also emotionally harrowing. The beginning of a relationship seems especially fraught with danger. Does she like me? Does he think my teeth are crooked? Does she want me to kiss her? Is it weird that his last name rhymes with my first name? So many worries! And, yes, it is kind of weird that your names rhyme. You need to have a plan, if this gets serious, so you don’t end up named Mary Berry.
For modern daters, most worries center around the progression of a relationship. How a couple gets from meeting to boyfriend/girlfriend is not as simple as it once was. Back in ye olden times, I’m told people traded fraternity pins and letterman jackets as signals of their exclusivity. If only it were still that simple. Nowadays, we spend way, way too long in those vague beginning stages.
Take Professor McGregor and me. Tomorrow night, we’re going on our second official date. If all goes well, we’re…
Well, I don’t actually know. Seeing each other? Dating? We’re certainly not at official status yet, but he’s also more than just “a friend of mine.” Friends don’t normally buy you dinner, then kiss you up against a wall. (Mine don’t anyway. Your social life could be way more exciting than mine, who knows?) If we are seeing each other, when does it become more? What’s the timeline for this sort of thing?
There isn’t one, damn it.
Which is the whole problem. Y’all, why don’t we have a game plan? We spend so much time fretting over the status of a relationship, when we should be enjoying said new relationship. Unfortunately, there is only one way out of this mess: a DTR. Unless your mate casually slips the word “girlfriend” or “boyfriend” into a conversation with others, the dreaded DTR is in your future. Oh, the akwardness of it all! I’ve known people – *cough* Mae *cough* – who texted their significant others asking their relational status, all in an effort to avoid the awkward talk. (Note: It worked out well! They’re engaged! This is obviously a smart thing to do.) This is how much we fear a DTR, friends.
It doesn’t have to be this way. World, I have a proposition. Guys, the next time you start seeing a girl whom you’re sincerely interested in, ask her this:
“Hey! I think you’re really neat. How about we go on a few dates, make out a couple of times, then become boyfriend and girlfriend, after a month or two?”
Y’all, if a guy asked me this, I’d be so smitten. A clear plan! No more wondering if you are going on another date. He likes you! He wants to date you, with an eye toward official status! All you have to say is “I think you’re neat too. Let’s do this!” and everyone knows where they stand. It’s so simple.
Some of you will say this takes the fun out of things. I get that. Only…what’s been happening inside my head lately hasn’t been fun at all. If I’d known Professor McGregor wanted to go out again, so many anxious phone calls to Kate could have been avoided. As soon as he asked me out, I was at peace. Sure, I’m still going to freak out about what to wear tomorrow, but he definitely doesn’t think I’m a troll who can’t kiss. This is progress! Just imagine if I had some sort of timetable to adhere to. I would be a freaking zen master right now.
So, guys (or braver girls than I), think it over. Try it out. This is the wave of the future, people!