The days of wearing your boyfriend’s varsity jacket as a sign that you were going steady are long gone. Now we brag about our love on social media and think that being Facebook official is all that matters. Things have definitely changed over the past few decades but one thing has remained the same: there are certain milestones that you have to pass in any relationship. Here are the new digital relationship milestones:
- Getting that very first text. Oh, texting. Dating would be so much simpler if it weren’t for the crazy-making existence of text messages. Unfortunately, texting is definitely not going anywhere anytime soon so we might as well get used to. The moment that your iPhone dings/makes music/makes noise/etc. and a text has magically appeared from the guy you’ve just started seeing, that means things have officially begun.
- Adding him into your iPhone contacts. This is a huge step. This means you’re serious (or kind of serious) about someone new and you’re willing to at least go on a second date with him. You don’t add just anyone into your contacts. Getting texts from someone with an actual name rather than just their number changes things.
- Becoming Facebook friends. New hot couple alert. Adding another friend to your list seemed super casual back in college since having as many friends as possible seemed so important. Now, it feels meaningful to digitally connect with someone in this way… even if you do break up eventually and end up deleting them.
- Following him on Twitter. For some reason, becoming a Twitter follower of your new guy seems like a much bigger commitment than Facebook. Maybe it’s because Twitter is a bit more serious and business-focused. You’re not just sharing silly updates or vacation photos, you’re musing about your latest Netflix love or the vegan cookies you just baked (OK, so maybe it’s not more serious than good old FB).
- Changing your Facebook status. This may have been overtaken in recent years by those annoying engagement ring photos (we get it, you have a ring, that makes sense) but it’s still pretty big news. We take some sick sort of pleasure in changing “single” to “in a relationship.” It may be kind of junior high but since we can’t walk down the hallway holding hands with our new BF, this is the next best (digital) thing.
- Your first couple selfie. Whether you post this on your pretty Instagram feed or make it your profile pic doesn’t matter. You’re telling the world (or at least your digital portion of it) that you’re into this person and that’s a crucial step in the course of your relationship.
- An actual phone call. OMG. Stop the presses. Seriously, if a guy actually phones you, you should probably consider yourself engaged already. Okay, maybe not, but it is pretty huge. There’s something so sweet, charming and old-fashioned about a phone conversation.
- Back-and-forth emails. Once you and your boyfriend progress to sending funny emails to each other while you’re bored at work, you can be sure that your love is on the right track. As far as online communication goes, email is super professional and since we don’t typically email our friends, it means something if you guys are emailing.
- Stopping all your social media gushing. This is the final step in the world of digital milestones and it’s the most important. When you don’t feel the need to document every single moment that you spend with your significant other, when you’re okay only talking about your life and your fave TV shows instead of how cute your boyfriend is – you know it’s real. Your relationship takes place offline, after all (well, hopefully).