Dating someone exclusively is having a monogamous, committed relationship in which you and your dating partner agree to only see each other. Getting to the exclusive stage should normally take several months to let you and your dating partner spend enough time together to know that this person is someone worth the time and effort. Working together in an exclusive relationship gives you the skills you will need later to be in a loving, caring life partnership.
In an exclusive relationship, you should be yourself and feel safe enough to share your feelings, according to Teens Health in the article “Love and Romance.” When you reveal yourself to your sweetheart through words, she listens, and you do the same for her. You learn more about your girlfriend over time and allow the relationship to grow. You might share things with this person you don’t share with anyone else, and you have confidence that she won’t violate your trust.
Spend Time Together
When you date one person exclusively, you spend quality and quantity time together. This person is who you date, take to school dances and introduce to your friends and family as someone special in your life. You don’t go out on a date with anyone else. You make your relationship a priority, according to therapist Margarita Tartakovsky in “3 Keys to a Strong Relationship” for Psych Central. You put your boyfriend first, building trust that you will be there for him when he needs you.
An exclusive relationship provides opportunities for the two of you to see how well you can cooperate and work together, according to psychologist Sam Von Reiche in the post “Serial Monogamy” on her website. When you don’t agree, you can negotiate to find a win/win solution. Both of you should give, as well as take, so neither of you feels resentful about being the only one making the relationship work. You accept your girlfriend as-is, realizing that both of you have flaws. You try to find ways to be stronger as a couple than you are apart.
What Exclusivity Isn't
Being in an exclusive relationship with someone does not mean that you do everything together. You need individual interests and time apart to keep the relationship interesting and growing, according to psychologist Debby Herbenick in “Balancing Time Together vs. Apart” for Psychology Today. You might take a couple of classes together, but you join the Spanish Club and your boyfriend marches in the band. You will have some friends in common, and other friends that only belong to one or the other of you. Enjoy your differences and your similarities as normal and healthy parts of your life.
- Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images