If you’re not ready for a serious relationship at the moment, then casual dating could be perfect for you. There are no commitments, you can date a variety of people, even meeting them online on casual dating sites such as Xmeeting and you can have fun in good company without having to worry about messy break-ups. At least, that’s what they say on lifehack.com, but is it possible to keep it casual without hurting yourself or anyone else?
According to Science Daily, casual relationships aren’t necessarily bad for you. They cite the results of a recent study: ‘…this study found no differences in the psychological well-being of young adults who had a casual sexual partner verses a more committed partner.’
It would seem that it is, indeed, possible to keep it casual without any ill-effects, but what should you look out for?
1) Guard against infatuation
Meeting someone you like being with could result in a belief that you’re ‘falling in love’. If you want to discover if it’s for real, you should avoid your date for a few weeks and see if you still feel the same way.
2) Stay in control
According to lovepanky.com, most casual relationships involve a dominant and a subordinate partner. The dominant partner decides when and where to meet and generally calls the shots. If you’re inclined to feel that your casual partner is too controlling, you should move on as soon as possible.
3) Set some rules
Both you and your casual date need to know that you’re ‘on the same page’. Make sure that they understand that the relationship is casual and that both of you are free to date others or end the relationship if it’s not working out. Decide in advance how often you’ll meet and whether sex will be part of the equation.
4) Avoid the ‘I love you’ stage
As soon as those words come out, you’re either going to end up in a serious relationship or your partner is going to take fright. If you’re having sex with your casual date, there’s a real danger of blurting this out in the afterglow.
5) Don’t hide your true feelings
Don’t stick to a boring partner just because you don’t want to hurt their feelings. Feelings shouldn’t feature in this relationship. If you think you’re falling in love, avoid your date for a while and tell them how you feel once you’re sure about it.
6) You or your casual partner might cross the line: talk about it
There are a few no-no’s in a casual relationship such as acting possessive or saying the ‘l’-word. You need to feel free to discuss these things openly.
7) Don’t be manipulated and don’t manipulate
The relationship is supposed to be about fun and good company. If you or your ‘buddy’ start pulling at each other’s heart-strings in an attempt at control, it’s time to re-think the situation.
8) Remember that you both want a relationship, but not with each other
When you’re in a casual relationship, you and your friend are options rather than priorities. Keep this in mind and don’t date only one casual partner.
9) Your partner is emotionally unavailable
It’s about fun and good company, it’s not about falling in love. People who enter casual relationships are usually not available for anything else. Expect a certain amount of emotional distance.
10) Don’t get trapped
If your otherwise distant partner suddenly gets clingy when you want to end the relationship, you’re probably being manipulated. Don’t fall for it!
Avoiding these pitfalls should ensure that your casual dating experience is as light and as pleasant as it should be.