How-To

How To Tell A Guy You Want To Be Exclusive

Having a conversation about monogamy can be uncomfortable, but it is necessary for the progression of a relationship. Here are some tips to help make the conversation go smoothly and make you feel more secure in expressing your feelings.

1. Assume you're not exclusive until you have the conversation

Discussing commitment can be uncomfortable, and many people may prefer to avoid the topic. However, in today's dating culture, where dating apps and instant gratification are prevalent, it is unrealistic to expect exclusivity after just one date. Avoiding the conversation about commitment from the start can lead to disappointment and pain in the future. It is best to address the topic head-on from the beginning to avoid potential discomfort.

2. Do it in person

Avoiding difficult conversations can be easy when communicating via text or phone. However, having in-person conversations allows for more direct communication and a better understanding of the other person's body language. It also allows for a more natural timing for the conversation, rather than bringing it up unexpectedly when the other person may be unprepared to discuss it.

3. Lay the groundwork

It is important to understand what both parties want before discussing exclusivity. Some individuals may not be seeking a committed relationship and it's beneficial to know this early on. Ideally, it's best to discuss each other's intentions within the first few dates to avoid wasting time in a relationship that may not align with what you're looking for.

4. Be direct about it

It is important to clearly express your intentions when discussing exclusivity. Avoiding clear communication can lead to misunderstandings and wasted time in a relationship that ultimately does not align with what you want. Be direct and honest about your desires without downplaying them or trying to make them sound more appealing. This approach may even be well received by the other person.

5. Don't let him dodge

Exclusivity can be a daunting concept for some individuals. He may be used to the freedom of not being in a committed relationship. However, it is important that he is upfront and honest about his readiness for exclusivity. If he is not ready to commit, he should communicate this to you. Avoid allowing him to avoid the topic or leading you on, especially after you have taken the initiative to initiate the conversation.

6. Don't make it a big deal

Discussing exclusivity does not have to be a formal or serious conversation. It is important to approach the topic in a relaxed and casual manner, letting him know that it's something you've been considering, and you want to understand his thoughts on it. If you present the topic in a formal or serious way, it may cause him to feel uncomfortable or push him away, even if he was open to the idea of exclusivity.

7. Avoid making it sound like a favor

Before having a conversation about exclusivity, it is important to understand the concept and what it means for the relationship. Exclusivity should not be viewed as a restriction or sacrifice, but rather as an opportunity. If you present the conversation in an apologetic or negative way, it may lead to the other person not treating the relationship with the respect it deserves. Instead, express that you have been considering the idea of exclusivity with them, and if they are worthy of you, they will understand that it is not a loss but a gain.

8. Read the signs

It is important to not only know what you want but also to understand how the other person may feel about the topic. Before discussing exclusivity, it is advisable to gauge the other person's level of interest. If they have avoided taking certain steps in the relationship, such as spending the night or introducing you to their friends, it is likely that the conversation about exclusivity may not be productive.

9. Accept that he may need time to respond

Some individuals may find the idea of a verbal agreement for exclusivity intimidating. Even though it may not have a significant impact on the relationship, it is still a big step for some people, particularly those who avoid confrontation. If the other person seems uncomfortable with the subject, do not interpret it as rejection right away. Recognize that they may not have been in this situation before and give them time to adjust before expecting an answer.

10. Remember it isn't a negotiation

Compromise is an important part of any relationship, but exclusivity is not something that can be negotiated. It is either a commitment to be exclusive or it is not. If the person you are dating tries to negotiate a more flexible arrangement, it is best to end the relationship as soon as possible. Anyone who tries to manipulate you into an open relationship after you have clearly expressed your desire for exclusivity is not interested in compromise, but in taking advantage of you.