When you’ve been dating someone for a while, it can be hard to tell when you cross over from casual to something a bit more concrete. If you’re struggling to figure out where you stand and don’t want to be awkward by bringing it up in conversation (though you really should — communication is key!), here are some signs your relationship is getting serious.
- You’ve decided to get a pet together. Obviously if you’re at a point where adopting a dog or cat or even getting a hamster together seems like a good idea, that’s one of the biggest signs you could ever possibly have that your relationship is getting serious. Pets are a huge commitment and they’re a massive responsibility too. You have to be in a really good place as a couple to become pet parents.
- You develop your own rituals together. The longer couples are together, the more they start to develop rituals, subconscious or otherwise. Maybe you order Chinese every Saturday night or you always go for hikes on Sunday mornings. Perhaps you meet him after work every Tuesday evening and you take a dance class together. Whatever the ritual, having one at all proves just how close you’re becoming.
- Being with them feels like coming home. In the early stages of a relationship, it’s natural to feel a little on edge and anxious around your new partner. You’re still getting to know them and vice versa and you don’t want to do anything to weird them out or scare them or jeopardize their attraction to you. However, one of the biggest signs your relationship is getting serious is when all of that dissipates and instead of feeling nervous around them, you simply feel at home. With them, you can finally be 100% yourself and it feels amazing.
- You don’t even need to ask them to know you have weekend plans. In the early stages of dating, you can never take for granted the fact that you’ll be getting together with the other person every weekend. However, once you’re in a committed relationship that’s solid as a rock, it’s pretty much a given that your weekend plans will include them. Why wouldn’t it?
- You consider each other’s families your own. You’ve not only met one another’s families, you know them so well that they’ve basically adopted you as one of their own. Same goes for your family with your partner. Of all the signs that your relationship is getting serious, this is one of the most important. When the people closest to you know and adore your partner, you know things are going well.
- You know how to fight fair. All couples fight at some point, but it’s only couples that are mature and totally dedicated to one another that know how to fight fair. You both know better than to say things you regret or to resort to blame and insults when you disagree about something. Instead, you’re productive about it and try to sort out the issue as quickly as possible.
- You keep stuff at each other’s place. It goes without saying that you’re in a serious relationship with someone (or at least it’s getting there) when you start leaving stuff at each other’s house/apartment. Maybe he’s left his boxers and favorite hoodies at your house or you’ve kept an extra bit of makeup at his for quick touch-ups before you go out. Whatever the case, invading each other’s space in this way is one of the biggest signs you’re in a pretty solid situation.
- You’re planning for a future together. This one needs no explanation. Once you start talking about the future with someone beyond the next few weeks, you know you’re made to last.