These days, the dating world is filled with plenty of people dating multiple partners at once before choosing their exclusive partner. It’s a standard way to find a partner because it gives you freedom and many options. If you’re in this situation but have fallen for a guy, you may want to take things to the next level. But does he? It’s never easy to ask because you may worry about scaring him away. Here’s what you need to do in this situation.
How to Ask a Guy if We’re Dating Exclusively (Examples)
There are basically two approaches you can take when asking a guy if you’re exclusive: the direct approach or a subtle one. We’ll break down each of these approaches below and include multiple questions that will help to make this situation more manageable for you to assess.
Just Ask Him
The most obvious route you can take here is just to ask your guy directly if you’re dating exclusively. Asking directly shows him that you’ve been thinking about your situation and take it seriously. It also helps to avoid any potential confusion by making things very clear. There are five questions that you can ask him to make it clear if you’re dating exclusively:
- We’ve been dating for a while. Are we exclusive at this point?
- Are you still dating other girls? Can I still date other guys?
- What’s our status? Are we committed or still dating other people too?
- Can I tell my friends we’re exclusive at this point?
- My parents have been wondering if we’re exclusive. Are we?
Now, your parents don’t have to ask if you’re exclusive for you to use that last question. Often, it is an excellent idea to shroud your interest in other people if you feel uncomfortable putting too much pressure on your guy. It does put up a bit of a shroud between you two and does slightly deceive him. Decide on this step only if you feel awkward or uncomfortable about asking him directly. Just as importantly, you must gauge his reaction. When asked, does he:
- Change the subject to something else?
- Refuse to answer the question or claim that you should “know” how he feels?
- Give a vague or confusing answer that only makes things harder to grasp?
- Get angry with you for asking him these questions or accuse you of pressuring him too much with them?
If your guy shows any of these signs, he might be trying to decide whether you’re exclusive or not. Some guys know that they want exclusivity but are very bad at deciding. They may not want to feel “trapped” or have “open options,” yet they still date only you. Patience may be needed with these guys, and, in some situations, it just may not be worth it.
Be Subtle About It
If you’re not quite ready to ask your guy directly, you can be a bit more subtle about it. These five questions give you a better understanding of where he stands. They also force him to explain the situation to yourself and you, giving you a better grasp of what to expect. Make sure to find the right time to ask one or more of these questions to find out if you’re dating exclusively:
- How’s your dating life going?
- Do you want to do something fun between just the two of us?
- What’s the best time to start dating someone exclusively?
- What do you think about open relationships?
- Would you be upset if I kept dating other people?
The tricky thing about this approach is not revealing too much or too little about your interest. For example, asking a guy about an open relationship may make him think that you want one. Or, if you ask about dating other people, he may believe you are not interested in being exclusive. So you must be careful about these questions and use them at the correct times to avoid misunderstandings.
For instance, ask about open relationships if you know someone who has one who struggles with it. Let him know that open relationships are not for you and that it’s not something that you want. Likewise, when asking about dating other people, you should do so in a way that makes it clear you’re not that interested in doing so. For example, ask if you should delete your dating profiles.
How Long Should You Date a Guy Before Becoming Exclusive?
There’s really no correct answer to this question. Some people may become exclusive immediately after the first dates. That’s one of the hardest things about dating: making sure that both of your needs are taken into account and that nobody is disappointed.
As a result, it is usually best to play it a bit by ear when you’re dating a guy. Is he already talking about exclusiveness a few dates into your relationship? He may be moving way too fast for some women – other women will like that kind of quickness. Does he seem to enjoy you, spend time with you, and try to find reasons to hang out? He may already consider you exclusive in his mind.
After all, some guys just assume exclusivity when you start dating, believing that his interest is clear and obvious. However, that’s rarely the case – guys often think that they’ve let you know they’re interested when they’ve done nothing but confuse you. So, is there anything you can do about this situation? Thankfully, yes – the following section will give you an idea of what to expect in this situation.
How Do You Know if a Guy Wants to Be Exclusive?
Often, it is hard for guys just to say that they want to be exclusive. They may want to be exclusive but answer you evasively or seem confused. Instead, they may communicate their interest via actions, believing that these should express their interest. Unfortunately, it is all too easy to misunderstand these behaviors. However, your guy definitely wants exclusivity if:
- He Starts Scheduling Trips With You – If a guy is planning on trips with you at any point, there’s a good chance that he’s taking your relationship to the next level.
- He Likes PDA – Does your guy rub your back, kiss you on the lips, hold your hands, or perform other public displays of affection? If so, he probably wants to stay exclusive.
- He Talks About Your Future – Plans for holiday adventures with family, talks about buying a house, or even mentions a wedding are all (fairly obvious) signs he wants exclusivity.
- He Tells You He Quit Dating Apps – Did your guy suddenly tell you out of nowhere that he deleted his dating apps? He’s letting you know you have his heart.
These simple signs should all indicate that your beau is ready to make things permanent and exclusive between you. They’re far from the only things to look out for, though. For example, a guy who invites you to his place, lets you stay for days, cooks with you, talk about introducing you to his parents, and continuously finds excuses to be with you is likely on the threshold of dating exclusivity.
You Deserve an Answer to This Question
When you’ve been debating a guy long enough, you deserve to know whether you’re exclusive or not. Knowing can make your dating situation easier to understand and prevent you from getting into a dead-end position. That said, you need to assess the right time to ask and how long you want to wait to get exclusiveness. If your guy refuses to answer or is vague, it might be time to find another partner.