Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Deal on the DTR: Defining the Relationship

There is perhaps nothing more awkward that the in-between stage of a relationship where you know you like someone and that there is some sort of thing going on but you are unsure of the other persons feelings or commitment to it. In college it's generally that we're hooking up but is there more to it than that? But it can also simply be that you are going on dates or spending a lot of time together and unsure of what it all means.

Simply put, it's awkward and confusing and puts you in a super weird position when trying to describe your relationship. Most of us just settle on the word thing, which is about as un-descriptive as it gets.

So the real question we all want answered is how do you know or find out if your thing is leading towards something. The first step to honestly evaluate the type of relationship you currently are having.

  • Are you both initiating conversation and hanging out/dates? 
  • How much have you guys gotten to actually know each other? 
  • Can you hang out in a non-sexual situation? Do you even want to?
  • Have they confirmed having feelings for you or at least an interest in you and your life?
If the answer to a lot of these questions is no then I'm sorry to say it sounds like you are on a one sided relationship without getting any love in return. Not to say that a relationship isn't possible but don't lie to yourself and end up getting hurt. If you are unsure then you're probably not being honest with yourself, think again.

If you answered yes to most of these questions then it sure sounds like there is something more to this than just the friendship or sexual aspect. If this is your case then terrific! But what the heck do you do now?

This is where we get to the gritty nasty stuff. The dreaded DTR or Defining the Relationship conversation. The first step though is to not refer to it as the DTR that will only shut the other person down from having a serious conversation if they think it's a "relationship talk."

There are a few basic things you should find out or at least establish. Are you exclusive? You don't have to be someones girlfriend/boyfriend to claim exclusivity in your relationship. Setting that boundary is the first step. 

Second, what are they looking for? Are they leaving to join the Peace Corp in a month and not wanting anything serious or are they wanting to get settled down in the near future? These are important things to establish so that you can see if you want the same things. 

Third, don't push the label thing, at first. So you can both agree that you like spending time together and don't want to be seeing other people. That doesn't mean that you have to declare yourself boyfriend and girlfriend or partners or whatever you want to call it. Take a chill pill and let whatever happens develop. If you are exclusively seeing each other already not being labeled isn't hurting you that much. The exception to this is if it gets to be an absurdly long amount of time and the other person just isn't willing to put a title on it for whatever reason. When you are sure that you are a couple and they just won't say it give an ultimatum and chances are they'll change their mind. 

The main thing you need to remember is that this is your relationship, no one elses. So don't worry about giving other people the labels they want to hear. Are you happy with your situation? If so then don't worry about anyone else! 

In any case, good luck and I hope you find whatever it is you're looking for.

As always, stay classy


Sunday, February 10, 2013

Lady in the Streets, Freak in the Sheets

Lady in the streets, freak in the sheets. 

You could say that this phrase accurately describes what men want and what a lot of young women aspire to be. A quick search on twitter will reveal this exact philosophy being tweeted and retweeted endless times on a daily basis. It's a saying that has been engrained in our culture but greatly contradicts everything else our society tells us. 

Women by societies standards are not supposed to admit to having any kind of sexuality but at the same time are supposed to be able to turn on the sex-kitten when with a man. It creates an intense double standard for young women where we are told to be sexual "freaks" but conceal it from society. 

Heaven forbid anyone finds out that you are a "freak in the sheets" because you're required to be a lady! Then you're a slut that is unacceptable for dating. 

This double standard is not only applied in how we are supposed to act but in how we are supposed to dress. Wearing anything low cut or tight makes you easy and a whore. But if you dress to conservatively you're prude, up-tight, or stuck up.

Essentially we can't win. You can't be the lady and the freak without being somehow wrong. This idea that is imposed on women is not only silly but damaging. It creates a standard that we can never fit and lends way to objectifying women even more. That to be ideal you have to be a sexual goddess and a perfect lady at the same time.

How about we go back to simply being ourselves. I am neither a perfect lady or a sexual freak, I'm Hayley and I'm defined by a lot of things but not some gimicky phrase.

Everyone, especially women need to stop reenforcing these double standards and negative messages. Start defining yourself by your words and your actions not what you think men want you to be.

As always, stay classy