Some may assume that dating and being in a relationship are the same. People can make this assumption when using each concept interchangeably, but they each have differences people may not notice. Those who have never had a boyfriend or girlfriend would certainly have no idea what we’ll be talking about! Sometimes it depends on how a person introduces their partner to people they know. They may refer to them as their girlfriend or boyfriend or say this is someone they are dating. You may be seeing someone for a while, but not sure if it is considered a relationship. You could be dating someone but wonder when it becomes a relationship. Clarifying aspects of each will help with understanding the status between you and your significant other.
What most couples fail to determine is when they’re not dating and have entered into a relationship. There is, obviously, a thin line between the two and sometimes one of them disagrees with the other. Couples must know dating vs. relationship differences to ensure that they are aware where exactly they stand and what importance they have in each other’s life.
To clear all the confusion and to get all the couples on the same page, here is what you ought to know about the difference between dating and being in a relationship.
What is dating?
Dating can be a way that two people explore their romantic or sexual interest in each other. They date to figure out whether there is the possibility of them getting into a committed and serious long-term relationship with each other.
Dating is like a taste test, in which individuals decide whether they want to continue if they like the other person enough to get into a relationship. It is the exploration stage, which is marked by curiosity, hope, questioning and uncertainty at times.
The dating phase of a relationship can end in moving towards a long-term relationship or both partners going their separate ways as they see no hope for a future together.
What is considered a relationship?
A relationship is a commitment that exists, usually between two people, whether they are romantic or sexually committed to being with each other. Instead of the uncertainty of dating, relationships are marked by hope and commitment towards a future together.
Relationships mark a growing emotional, romantic and sexual intimacy with each other. The couple are able to open up to each other and state their expectations from a relationship.
Relationships are usually the foundation on which two people learn to live life together.
What is the difference between dating and a committed relationship?
One of the major difference between dating and relationship is having your own idea about what the two are. While relationships are based on mutual agreement and trust, dating isn’t the same. For some, casual dating is not mutual. The idea of exclusivity while with someone may differ. Some people like to exclusively date each other while others like to date other people and don’t want to be committed to just one person
2* Declaration of love
An important aspect to consider when looking at dating vs relationships is the declaration of love. Dating is an exploration state between two people, and therefore there is no declaration of love usually involved at this stage. The couple may convey their interest in each other by letting the other person know that they like them.
In relationships, however, you are emotionally connected to your partner and convey your love for them using your words and actions. Experts call these declarations of love the oxygen that keeps relationships alive.
This one’s a given. Commitment is the key in a relationship, that’s why it’s a relationship. People commit to stay together and look forward to a future together while dating (mostly) lacks commitment of any sort. The only commitment people may have while they’re dating is to get an ice cream together, after dinner!
4* Entering their social life
Everyone has a social life and not everyone is welcome in that. Whilst dating, you tend to keep the person away from your social life since you’re not sure of the future together.
This thing changes when you’re in a relationship. You include them in your social life, introduce them to your friends and family, in some cases. This is good progress and perfectly defines dating vs relationship situations.
Communication differs largely in a relationship vs while dating. While you’re in a relationship you’ll be communicating with your partner often, about every little thing. Be it telling them about the small little details from your past or asking them to snore a little less while they’re sleeping! Dating is different. Communication is limited and basic and not too intrinsic. Like deciding where to eat next or a casual banter is something couples who’re dating usually indulge in.
6* Making plans together
This is another major dating vs relationship point that can help you understand where you stand. When you’re dating, you may not make plans together quite often. You would rather be with your close friends and family than make plans with someone you’re dating.
However, when you’re in a relationship you make most of your plans with that person. You even plan your trips accordingly. This is a revealing trait when comparing dating versus relationships.
Of course expectations vary when you’re dating someone or when you’re in a relationship. You expect lesser from the person if you’re dating them. It’s normal for one person to be more into the dynamic than the other person but because you both know it’s casual, there are no expectations of the future etc. with them. A relationship, however, is built on expectations. You expect every little thing from your partner. From patience to even a bright shining future, it’s all on autopilot.
8* Enjoying each other’s company
When you’re too comfortable with someone and enjoy their company the most, you certainly have moved up the ladder towards a relationship. When considering dating vs relationship, comfort lies on the side of relationships.
You’re no longer just trying to know each other, you both pretty much are comfortable and enjoy each other’s company. You have clarity and would surely like to see things going in a good direction.
While both dating and relationships are meaningful, one prioritises lesser than the other. When you’re dating someone you’re not necessarily serious about them so you prioritise other things along with them like work, friends, activities etc. When you’re in a relationship, your dynamic with other people might change entirely because the person you’re with takes prime importance in your life. They come before family, friends and even work.
10* No looking around
While dating, you tend to look around and keep in touch with other single people with the hope of a good future.
As mentioned above, you’re not bound with any responsibility so you’re free to date other people as well.
However, when you’re in a serious relationship you leave all this behind since you believe you’ve found a match for yourself. You’re happy with the person and the entire mindset changes. This surely is one of the major points in dating vs relationship.
Thanks for reading please share to educate others and don’t forget to like and comment your opinion in the comment section. See you next time and have a good day