I don’t want to come across as some relationship-obsessed harpy and I’m sure once we’ve been seeing each other for long enough he’ll come round – we’re in a relationship in all but name anyway.” I slightly want to bang my head against the keyboard now, not least because I’ve said the same thing more than once in the past.I’m not judging – I can see how easy it is to get into that situation.The truth of the matter is there is no science to the perfect relationship.Keep your sex life and dating life interesting and fresh, respect each other's dreams and throw tradition to the wind.Know that love is very real and occasionally messy, and most importantly, do what makes you and your partner happy. Invariably if the person I’m speaking to has been single at any point in the last decade, then yes, they know exactly what I mean, because if there’s one scenario that’s become endemic amongst myself and my peers, it’s our inability to define a relationship after the first five or six dates. Is it too soon to refer to someone as your boyfriend? If you’ve been on 12 dates with someone, you really don’t still want to be seeing other people do you?
So, let me help you out with some suggestions next time you’re asked to define your non-relationship: “Well Gran, it’s funny you should ask, there is someone on the scene, we’re: sleeping together/seeing each other/dating/friends with benefits/friends (apparently the same as friends with benefits, but twice as infuriating) /having an affair (it’s unfortunate when, after 12 dates you discover that his reticence to define your relationship is down to his previously unmentioned wife) or wasting each other’s time until something better comes along.” I agree that technology – evil, brain-sapping technology – might play its part here. When I asked for further clarification as to what we were doing he said “We’re friends - you’re my friend.” Hilariously, when the article in question came out, a couple of my other exes read the piece and took credit for that particular quote (hint: it was none of them), which is a sorry example of quite how often I've gone down that particular road. My new rule is, eight weeks – if someone won’t call it after eight weeks, then I’m out of there.
Successful relationships require both partners to put in a lot of effort; if you really love one another, it doesn't feel like work.5. While it's nice to consult your girl friends or bros about relationship issues, keep in mind that every relationship is different and what works for one couple may not work for you.
This also means that not everyone is going to understand why you do what you do; it may not make sense to your best friend why you chose to give up something you once loved for your significant other — and that's OK.
A couple who can respect each others dreams and chase them together is a couple that will have a strong, lasting relationship.4.
Be realistic, optimistic and willing to put in the work.