Are We In A Relationship Or Just Dating? How To Tell

When you’ve been seeing someone for a while, it’s normal to wonder where the two of you stand – are you dating or in a relationship? After a few weeks of hanging out, it’s normal to question the status of things. Ask yourself the following questions to help determine if he sees you two as dating or headed towards a relationship.

  1. How Does He Introduce You? You can tell a lot about a guy’s intentions by the way he introduces you to other people. If he calls you his girlfriend or significant other, then you’re in a relationship. But if he introduces you only by your name, or worse, calls you his friend, then you two aren’t in a committed relationship.
  2. How Much Time Do You Spend Together? In general, the more time you spend together, the more serious things are getting. According to the experts at Best Life, if you spend more time apart than you do together, it’s a sign you’re just dating. But if you’re increasing your time together, then things are heading towards a relationship.
  3. What Do You Do Together? It’s not just about how much time you spend together, but also what you’re doing that matters. If you only meet up around planned activities – like going to the movies, grabbing dinner, or hanging out in a group – you’re likely only dating. But if you two hang out while doing nothing (maybe he comes over when you’re doing homework or dishes), it’s a sign of a stronger connection and he’s in it for more than just fun.
  4. Is He Using Dating Apps? If he has dating apps downloaded, then he doesn’t see the two of you in a committed relationship. Even if he’s not active online, he doesn’t feel the need to delete them since you’re not exclusive. He may want to see where things go before deleting his profile or he simply wants to play the field.
  5. Have You Met His Friends And Family? If you’re just dating, he’s unlikely to introduce you to his friends and family. He not going to want to dodge questions from loved ones about the status of your relationship if he doesn’t see this as long-term. Conversely, if the people in his life are aware of you, then he sees this going somewhere.
  6. Does He Talk About His Ex? If he keeps bringing up past relationships, then it’s a sign he hasn’t moved on. In fact, he may only see you as a rebound. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t enjoy your company. But it’s a strong sign that he’s not ready to rush into anything serious right now and is more comfortable simply with dating.
  7. Are You On His Social Media? Sharing photos of a love interest online is a sign of commitment. As Seventeen Magazine points out, it’s his way of showing the world you’re together. He’s proud of you and sees this going somewhere. If you’re only casually dating, he’ll be reluctant to leave online evidence that you’re in his life since he doesn’t see it as a long-term thing.
  8. Are You Emotionally Intimate? Many folks have one-night stands with people they barely know. So, it’s not unusual to be physically intimate with someone you’re dating. But assume you’re in a relationship just because you’re having sex. However, if you’re emotionally intimate, it’s a sign you’re connecting on a deeper level. If he’s opening up to you, it’s because he trusts you, which is a precursor to a relationship.
  9. How Often Does He Communicate? Communicating takes effort, and if he doesn’t see this turning into a relationship, you’ll see it in his replies. He won’t be the first one to reach out nor will he bother replying immediately. It’s because you’re not a priority in his life. Granted, he may just be a bad texter. But if he’s interested in committing to you, you’ll feel it in his communication.
  10. Does He Talk About Your Future? If he doesn’t see this as something serious, then he’s not going to bother thinking about the future. He may not want commitment or is still unsure of where things are going between you two. But if he’s talking about upcoming plans that involve you – whether it’s weeks or years into the future – then he’s leaning towards a relationship.
  11. Have You Had The Talk? Finally, if you haven’t discussed exclusivity, then he likely doesn’t view this as a relationship. If he considered you his girlfriend, he would’ve said something. After all, he’ll be curious to know if you feel the same way. That doesn’t mean that he doesn’t want a relationship, though. Rather, he may be waiting for the right time to have the talk. Consider initiating the conversation yourself to get on the same page.
Alexandra is a freelance writer in Montreal, Quebec. She enjoys shopping as a sport, Buffy the Vampire Slayer re-runs, and being a plant mom.