What is meant by intentional relationships/dating?
Intentional relationships/dating involve making your wants and needs clear and actively working towards those said ideas. Personally, I prefer dating and being in a relationship with the intention of getting married. I don’t see myself going on casual dates because that’s a struggle I can’t subscribe to. I like direction, security and conscious effort.
When it comes to dating, I think there needs to be transparency from the start in regards to your intentions, wants and needs. If the other person can’t match it or isn’t making the effort to, you know where you stand. There’s no point forcing your ideal love story on someone who’s not looking or willing to play a part in it.
Know yourself and know how you want to be loved so that you can express that to whoever you’re dating or seeing. If that person has difficulty reflecting that, you two are not compatible. If you’re a believer in love languages discuss it so it can be implemented.
For example, my top love language is quality time and I’m big on that, so if I express this to someone I’m seeing and they’re not making the effort to give me that, I’m going to think they must hate me (not literally lol). However, I will think I’m not being prioritised and they’re not invested in the primary way I want to be loved. To note: some people can be interested but not ready for personal reasons.
If the person I’m seeing’s top love language is acts of service, I would make a conscious effort to do things for them, like clean up, do their laundry, go to the shop, cook them a meal, give them a massage etc. I would want to see them smile and make them feel loved.
Mistakes are inevitable and I’ve come to realise we as humans are not always going to get it right. I’ve learned that people don’t just change over night, it can take a bit of time dependant on the situation (some may be even be unsolvable!). However, what I do understand is if both parties want it to work, they’ll try and you’ll see improvements. If the effort isn’t apparent, they’re not interested let alone invested. I would also like to note, when it comes to intentional relationships, it does not mean packing up when things get tough. I’ll discuss this further in my next blog post.
A lot of people have commitment issues so they’ll prolong the talking stage, the dating stage etc. Then you get people popping the “what are we?” question. And the worst thing is a lot of people are scared of rejection and/or too attached so they go with the everlasting talking or dating stage, even though that’s not what they want. They want clarity and would like to establish something concrete or serious not confusion.
This can lead to a lot of hurt and resentment especially when you’re not multi-dating and just focused on them. I personally don’t think the dating stage should last for more than three months especially if you’re seeing each other consistently. Anything beyond for me just leads to confusion and doubt. There’s some hinderance. Someone’s not updating you and being transparent about how they feel about you and the situation. This breeds comfortability because as long as you’re not addressing the situation, they’ll be content on prolonging it.
To conclude, I would say be honest about your thoughts throughout and plans because similar to what was mentioned before it can hurt, particularly when you’ve fallen for them, also invested your time and effort into being with them.