We all know someone who is just “seeing how it goes” with her beau. He’s uncomfortable with labels or she doesn’t want him to state his level of commitment yet.
Everyone knows what husband, fiancée, boyfriend and even soul mate means. But they might get very confused if you call someone your lover or date. They might think you’re having an affair or have just met…they won’t understand the true nature of your relationship. That’s where a label comes in handy!
It may sound like a good idea to keep things easy-going and avoid talking tough about what’s going on between you two. But at a certain point your relationship needs a label.
And here are 5 reasons why:
Ownership of the relationship, not the person of course, comes along with a relationship label. When you say someone is your boyfriend, fiancée or husband there is a sense of belonging in the relationship. With that label comes responsibility for success; it opens up a deeper level of commitment. Introducing someone by just their name doesn’t quite have the same weight.
Having a title allows you both to make a few assumptions about your partnership, even if you don’t go over the details just yet. A title can tell you what’s reasonable to expect to give and get; you have higher expectations for your fiancée than you would for a boyfriend. Without a label there is no guideline to how either of you should behave with each other or other people.
Each relationship is different. This often requires an honest talk about your relationship and what it means to both of you. Without a label this talk is likely not happening. Yes, you may talk about not wanting to put too much pressure on the union. But you’re probably not talking about what you really need, how you see your future with this person and what boundaries you want respected.
No labels often mean no defined rules. And no defined rules mean no consequences. You can’t enforce the consequences of breaking a rule if there’s no rule in the first place. Putting a label on your relationship and discussing rules and consequences keeps you both from doing or saying hurtful things…and having to clean up a mess you didn’t know you made.
A title commands exclusivity. It brings stability to your enduring butterflies. A title like “boyfriend” implies you are now officially established as a pair. You can certainly have these feelings and act as a pair without the label, but it’s like working at a job without a title. If someone asks you what you do how would you respond?
Letting go of labels keeps off the pressure but also relieves the responsibility. If you have something special with someone, don’t be afraid to call it what it is. If you’re with someone who wants you, they’ll claim you!