Four Types of Dating Relationships: What’s Your Relationship Status

Are you both on the same page when it comes to the type of relationship you’re in?

Are you and your man in the same type of dating relationship?

While you may believe you’re exclusive, he may be thinking something else. That’s why it’s important to know your relationship status.

Generally there are four types of relationships. By knowing what they are, you can determine which type of dating relationship you’re in and which type you want.

The four basic types of dating relationships are:

  • Quick or Intimate Casual Relationship
  • Casual and Friendly Relationship
  • Serious and Exclusive Relationship
  • Toxic Relationships

The two types of relationships most people want are casual and friendly or serious and exclusive. They are the type of dating relationship which can eventually lead to a long-term commitment. The other two types usually lead to heartbreak.

Here’s a description of each type of relationship, starting with the two you really should avoid if your goal is a long-term committed relationship:

Quick or Intimate Casual Relationship

This is a “no expectation” relationship. You enter into this with the assumption that neither of you wants anything more than the relationship has to offer you at that moment.

Quick and intimate relationships are often physically intimate, although some are not. This type of dating relationship includes one-night stands and friends with benefits. An example of a non-intimate quick casual relationship is the guy you use for special occasion dates. You know the one you invite to your sister’s wedding or the office holiday party. While thess types of relationships can last over a few dates or a few months, usually there are no expectations of future “dates”.

The main problem with this type of relationship is that many times there are hidden expectations . One of you may hope for the relationship to evolve over time. When it doesn’t, an intimate and quick relationship can leave you feeling angry, bitter and used. Physical intimacy does not create love or a relationship.

While this can begin as a casual date, once you enter this type of intimate relationship, it’s difficult, if not impossible,  to change it into something else. So, if you want to have a chance at a long-term relationship, it’s best to avoid a quick and intimate relationship.

Toxic Relationships

Sometime you enter into a relationship for the wrong reason. It may be to ease the pain of a break up or avoid feelings of loneliness. For whatever reason, you begin a relationship to fill a void that you may be experiencing in your life.

A toxic relationship is one that is not good for you emotional, physically, mentally or spiritually.

Some common types of toxic relationships are: 

In order to have a long-term healthy relationship, you need to find what’s missing in your life and fill that void yourself, before you start looking for someone to date.

When you have your life on track and you feel confident and have high self-esteem you’d be better able to determine if a relationship is right for you. If will also allow you to avoid the toxic men who are trying to date you.

Casual and Friendly Relationships 

This is the typical relationship a person enters through when they begin casually dating someone. It should involve dating more than one man. You can have multiple casual and friendly relationships at a given time.
While your goal is to find a man to have a serious relationship with, that’s not the only possible outcome. This type of relationship can lead to platonic friendships, an exclusive relationship or to no relationship at all. The outcome depends on how you feel about the person you’re dating as you get to know them.

Problems in this type of relationship occur when one person wants to take the relationship to the next level and the other does not. While there is no right or wrong time to be in this type of relationship, most people have their own internal time clock.

Your relationship is casual and friendly until BOTH of you agree that your relationship is exclusive. Don’t start behaving as though the relationship is at a different level. It’s easy to trick yourself into believing that your relationship has evolved, when it hasn’t.

There is also a chance that your date may want to become serious before you want to. You may begin to feel pressure from him to take the relationship to the next level.

Instead of focusing on becoming exclusive, this type of relationship requires you to take time to get to know each other. Enjoying your time together during this casual dating phase of your future relationship will help build the bond that will keep you together long-term.

Serious and Exclusive Relationship 

This is the goal of many dating couples. In a serious and exclusive dating relationship you and your partner should  not  be dating anyone else. The next step after a serious and exclusive dating relationship is getting engages and a formal commitment such as marriage.

Problems occur when you rush into an exclusive relationship. Rushing a relationship may lead you to settle or you can end up with the wrong man. Taking the time to get to know your partner is the best way to have a healthy long-term relationship.

You can’t rush or force your partner to become exclusive in the hopes that he will eventually see the light and realize you’re the one for him. This may mean waiting a few months or longer, to get to this type of dating relationship.

While you’re in a serious or exclusive relationship you still have work to do. You have the potential for a future together, but you still to work on building a strong foundation for a long-term relationship.
You still have more to learn about each other. You still need to maintain the great relationship you’ve been building. In other words, there still work to do.

You may be in a serious or exclusive relationship for months or years before you “get the ring.” According to one survey most successful couples, people married for over 10 years, were together for two to four years before getting married and stayed engaged for an average of 15 months.
In the beginning of a dating relationship, you’ll always start as casual and friendly.  

In time this relationship fizzles, becomes a friendship or eventually become serious. If that’s your goal, you want to make sure you avoid quick or toxic relationships. Focus on building the right type of relationship, with the right man.