There’s nothing quite as thrilling as the start of a new relationship. I always revel in my quickened heartbeat, stomach butterflies, and even sweaty palms when I’m in the presence of a new boyfriend. But after a couple of weeks, those nervous indicators of attraction turn into a full-on panic attack.
I’m itching to define the relationship.
After a couple of weeks, it should be clear as to whether or not the relationship is a short-lived fling or the start of a long-term commitment. Yes, every relationship is different and each develops at its own pace, but I’m a planner and like to know where my train is going before I hop on if you get my drift. I want to DTR but never know how or when to begin the “So, what are we?” conversation. After two weeks, I hold my breath, waiting for him to initiate the conversation or drop the “I don’t think we have a future together” bomb.
The honeymoon phase is, well, just a phase.
It’s a relationship, not a perpetual honeymoon, meaning these warm and fuzzy feelings are bound to come to an end, or at least mellow out. Even if the relationship lasts for years—or, hell, even a lifetime—I know we won’t always be as affectionate as we are during the first couple of weeks. After a few days, I start to wonder when I’ll lose the rose-tinted glasses and whether or not that moment will result in our decision to break up.
It’s time to start asking myself the big questions.
Even before we DTR, I need to do some serious soul-searching and ask myself just what it is I’m looking for in my next relationship. Sex? Companionship? Someone to inspire me and make me a better person? A wedding band? At two weeks, I feel pressure to envision the next three, six, even 12 months with my partner, anxious to know that the relationship is worth my investment.
After two weeks, it’s time to split the bill.
I’m nothing if not old fashioned and poor, which is why I don’t have a problem with guys buying me drinks or dinner… for the first couple of dates. After two weeks, I feel like I need to jump in there and pick up the tab every now and then. I’m all about reciprocated financial generosity, but I still cringe every time I reach for my wallet.
I let my guard down.
This is just another way of saying that I fall further and feel deeper. Apparently this is a huge anxiety of mine, otherwise, I might not have mentioned it three or four different ways already. I’m optimistic and hopeful that these two weeks will blossom into something serious so I don’t guard my heart. Vulnerability is real, OK??
Sleep takes a backseat to sex (or other couple-y activities).
Definitely not the worst thing in the world, but what’s a girl gotta do to get a decent eight hours of sleep? Be single, that’s what. After two weeks of late nights and early mornings (unfortunately, the professional world doesn’t come to a screeching halt each time a new relationship starts), I become exhausted and can hardly concentrate on anything but sustaining those butterfly flutters.
I run out of cute outfits.
When my boyfriend told me he liked the fact that I wore fun earrings, I made an effort to wear a new pair each time he saw me—and no, I don’t dress for my boyfriend, I dress for his compliments, which are for me. I did the same thing with my clothes until I realized the only thing he hadn’t seen me in was my “I <3 Chipotle” t-shirt. After a couple of weeks, it’s time to pull out the big guns and get creative with outfits. Or just go shopping.
Spending time with my boyfriend becomes second nature.
According to a study conducted by University College London, it takes about 21 days to establish a simple habit (it takes longer if that habit requires more time or energy). Reveling in a new relationship occurs without much conscious effort, so creating a habit of affection occurs almost immediately. At about 14 days into my relationships, I begin to worry that I’m becoming dependent on my partner, his texts, and the time we spend together.
With habits come expectations.
Once I become used to his affection and the effort he makes to keep my attention, I’ll expect it a week, month, even a year down the road. After two weeks of “good morning” texts, I’ll immediately notice—and be disappointed—the day he forgets to send one. I know the better things are in the beginning, the more obvious both of our inevitable missteps will be.
My mom has too many questions.
My mom’s favorite way to inquire about my sisters’ and my relationship statuses is by asking, “So, do we still like [insert name of guy]?” That predictable question rears it’s ugly head anywhere between one hour and two weeks after the first date and when it does, I never know how to answer. This is why DTR-ing (D-ing TR?) is so damn important.
Speaking of family, when should he meet mine?
Remember what I said about building habits? After a couple of weeks of mentioning my boyfriend, he literally becomes a household name, which begs the question as to when he’s going to meet my parents and I his. Will he be invited to my sister’s wedding next spring? Will he still be in the picture when my brother graduates? Will my dog like him?
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