When Should You Make Your Relationship Official? Here’s How To Know & How To Do It

When you start dating someone new, the number one thing you start thinking about is probably when you should make your relationship official. Am I right? Wondering when to start calling that dude you’ve been hooking up with your boyfriend can be super stressful. If you say it at the wrong time, it can destroy any chance of a future relationship – but the same thing can happen if you wait too long. Argh.

Well, a recent study done by both Zoosk and Glamour revealed something a little bit surprising about when to make things official. They took a look at over 1,000 girls and 1,000 dudes and this is what they found: 25 percent of women think that you should wait “at least a few months” before making things legit, while 43 percent of guys thought “it takes a couple of good dates.”

So, how do you know when to make your sort-of-relationship an official relationship? That can be a little bit tricky.

Here’s something important that you need to remember: you have every right to ask the dude you’ve been hooking up with what he wants and if he’s interested in being your boyfriend. I know too many girls who are too afraid to ever bring up the Big Talk because they’re worried that it’s going to scare the guy off. That is ridiculous. 

Listen, girls: if bringing up the r-word (relationship) is really going to scare the guy off, then he was never interested in seriously dating you to begin with and waiting longer was most likely not going to change that. That may sound harsh, but it’s true. If a guy is interested and worth your time, he’s not going to go running out the door when you ask him about being boyfriend and girlfriend.

Back to the first question. How do you know when it’s time to bring it up? I’m siding with the guys here: it’s best to wait until after a couple of great dates and hang out seshs. Don’t be all like, “BE MY BOYFRIEND” in the middle of a first date, okay? That will freak anyone out. Wait a few weeks, after you guys have been hanging out for a little while. This will give you both time to get to know each other and to figure out if you’d like to be in a relationship together. It will also give you time to get more comfortable to talk to him about it.

make it official

Want this? Sometimes you need to be strong and ask for it yourself. | Source: ShutterStock

Okay, so then how do you bring it up? I know that starting this conversation with a dude can be awkward, uncomfortable and completely nerve-wracking. Trust me, I know. I’ve done it a million times and let me just tell you guys something: I am really shy. So if I can talk about this with dudes, anyone can. I promise.

Like I said, this might be a slightly awkward convo – there might be no getting around that. But it’s worth it! Would you rather be lame and sit around waiting to hear what he thinks or would you rather take the initiative and find out where his head is on your own? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Here’s what to do: first of all, this conversation should happen in person, not through text messages, Facebook chats or even on the phone. Second of all, you should be relatively calm when you bring it up. The worst time to do this is in the middle of a fight or in the middle of sex.

When asking your guy what he wants and if he wants to make the relationship official, you just need to be blunt. There’s no beating around the bush. Just say something like this: “I think we’ve been having a lot of fun these past few weeks and I really like you. I just want to know what you want out of this relationship? Are you interested in getting serious or are you not looking for anything like that?” Yes, ladies, you do have to tell him how you feel.

Another important thing to keep in mind: going into this, you need to know what you want. If you want a relationship, you need to say that. If you don’t, say that too. And don’t agree to things you don’t want. If the guy says he has no interest in being serious, he means it. Don’t be like, “Oh, okay, we can be friends with benefits” and secretly hope he’ll change his mind. He won’t. As much as it sucks, you may need to cut ties with him if things don’t go well. Don’t settle for something you don’t want just to be with him in some way!

Basically, this is a conversation that needs to happen. I know waaaayyyy too many girls who have been hooking up with a guy they really like for months and are too afraid to ask him what he wants. And you know what? These girls aren’t happy. They’re stressed because they have no clue what this dude wants because they’re too scared to say what they want. And you deserve better than that.

So, for lack of a better choice of words, man up and have The Talk with your guy after a few weeks of dating. No matter what happens, I promise that you won’t regret figuring things out on your own.

Have you ever had The Talk with a guy? What did you say? Are you afraid to ask to make things official? Tell us in the comments.


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  • damn_daniel

    I’ve known this guy for two years. We had been best friends before we started dating. I finally told him how I felt a week ago and we’ve been dating since. We went on one date a few days ago and it went amazing. We’re very touchy with each other and are really comfortable around one another, and we’ve already kissed quite a few times. Like, more than just kissing, more like making-out… Anyway, that’s not the most important part of a relationship, but it helps. I guess, what I’m trying to say is that I’ve known him for so long already that in our situation does the number of dates we’ve been on still apply. We’re planning on long-term goals here, we’ve already kind of hinted at it to each other before. Going to get (non-matching) tattoos together, and mini-golfing are future plans we have with one another. I’m sure there will be more to come, but what I’m trying to say is that I already known him so well, and we already know we like each other a lot, and get along really great, just how do I know when we make it official. I mean, even before we started dating we had said things like, “I love you” before to one another, so we’re quite the pairing and extremely caring towards one another. The other thing is that when he was dating a girl a few months ago, whom he wasn’t all that much interested in, he said he wasn’t into labels when I poked fun at him by calling her his girlfriend, so do guys change their mind about things like that when it comes to the girl they’re with? He seems to really like me, and obviously I really like him, so how do I bring this discussion up with him at the right time without seeming too needy or aggressive.

  • Yeaitsme

    For me what happened is I have been talking to this guy and I know the worst thing is to get all excited over someone at work but that’s exactly what happened we have been talking for 2 months and it seems at work we can’t get off eachother we have fun in every way possible but out of work theirs lack of communication and the slow messages only makes me think if I’m not good enough… He always says how he wants to take things slow… It’s confusing… I feel like I’m left w mind games…

  • Quaneisha Love J’Maury

    So is it wrong that even thought you want a relationship and he not ready but he still manage to make u happy and feel as if y’all in relationship and it’s almost been 5 months and I grew to be fine with it . Am I wrong for staying and will I get hurt more ? I do want a relationship but he treats me so good I just learn to deal with it what bother me u say u not ready honestly anyone came around y’all would think we’re in relationship we took beach trip , dates with my son and he met my parents and double date with his sister we both single for two years cause our pass relationship hurt us idk if I should put my foot down or just be ok

  • CollegeFreshy

    This article helped me so much. It made me see all the errors I made in my last relationship and how to better them in the future. Next time I need not to settle for anything less. Like you said, if the guy says he doesn’t want a relationship then I do not need to wait around for him to “change his mind” in order to stay with him. Thanks for this advice.

  • Willow

    I’ve been dating a guy for months now. We hang out several times a week, we’re sexually intimate, we talk about what we want in the future, he’s kissed me in front of his son etc. We’re at the point where we act like a couple but we’re still not official. When we first started dating, we had the big talk and we were both on the same page about just wanting to date for a while and just let things happen. Neither of us have said “I love you” yet, but it’s on the tip of my tongue constantly when I’m with him. Should I bring up the big talk again now that I’M ready or should I wait for him to bring it up?

  • Somechick

    So, I’ve been dating a wonderful person for 4 months now. We act like a couple in everyway. We’ve met all of each other’s friends. As a matter of fact, we mostly share the same group of friends because we started off as friends. I’ve met his mother as someone he was dating. We’ve both agreed to date exclusively. We’ve been on multiple vacations together. I’ve given him a drawer in my apartment. We spend most of our free time together. He stays at my apartment 5 or 6 days a week. He for some reason calculates our anniversary (which we really don’t have because we aren’t official). We’ve talked about a future together and we both say, ” I love you” everyday. However, we aren’t an official couple. We’ve talked about our status and he just wants to date. At first, I understood why. I was just an exchange student and we were only going to have those few months together. So, a future may not have been possible. But things changed and I decided to go back and be with him for over a year. I’ve already got my visa and everything is in line for me to go back to be with him in 6 months. We are long distance dating
    if that’s such a thing and we are still exclusive with one another. He still doesn’t want to be official. Am I over reacting? Is his response okay? Or am I right to be a bit upset that he doesn’t want to be official? How should I communicate that I’m upset? Or should I not? Please some advise…

  • Ginabean

    I met a guy on an online dating site about a year ago… hes a good looking guy and works out a lot so he has a nice body..but knows it. So when we met up, he was very cocky and I just cant deal with that kind of personality. So I stopped talking to him after that. Fast forward to a couple weeks ago, he contacts me again saying we should hang out. We speak on the phone and via text a few times before I agree to hang out again. He seems a bit more humble now so I give it a shot. This guy has changed in the course of just under a year. We have a lot in common and share a lot of interest. Over the next week, he is telling me how he has never felt this way about anyone or had this connection because he was always that cocky guy with random girls all the time. He seems VERY into me and is super affectionate but I’m a bit more on the reserved side. He has been asking me to be his girlfriend constantly since. We’ve hung out 3 times with 1 of those being an official date. We havent had sex but have been intimate. I feel that its too soon to be official as my last relationship was 2 years ago and it was almost 5 yrs long and we dated for a year before becoming official (he was recently out of a relationship so we wanted to take it slow). So I am not use to guys moving this fast or all the affection that hes shown in such a short period of time. Im really confused and dont know what to do. I’ve told him its too soon to be official but he continues to ask and brings up reasons why we are good together. Help, am I just being “a guy” about this situation since hes the one being the “girl” in this, according to the article its us women that tend to be the ones jumping the gun lol.

  • Maribel

    Hi! Just wanna ask about my situation…i admire this guy since the first time i met him. We’re dating for almost a yr now. But until now we dont have a serious relationship with each other. I really like him. And i think i love him so much. But my problem is he is not ready to commit himself to me coz of his personal problem. Do i need to wait for him and keep on dating w him even if i dont have any assurance that we can have a serious relationship with him?