Sex Never Defines the Relationship

In college, I basically slept with guys as a means of making them my boyfriends. Within the first few weeks of dating (a.k.a. going to after parties together and hooking up), we’d start having sex, which always lead to some sort of boyfriend/girlfriend situation. Well, really that only happened on two occasions, but twice was enough for me to assume that sex equated boyfriend…. boy did I make an ass out of myself.

Truth be told, the longest I’ve ever waited to sleep with someone I was dating is a month. Typically, I make it a couple of weeks, or, on one or two occasions, through the first date. I now know that just because you’re sleeping with someone (with or without a condom, mind you) does not mean that you are on your way to couplehood. But I definitely learned that the hard way.

I’ll never forget the first time a man, whom I’d been sharing a bed with four to five times a week, informed me that I wasn’t his girlfriend when I was under the clear assumption that he was indeed my boyfriend. Talk about a giant slap in the face…. and boy, it stung like hell. Looking back, there were a few warning signs I should have heeded – like saying he wasn’t sure he wanted to be in a relationship at this point in his life or that he needed to be more selfish – but there were also definite indications that he was interested in me as a girlfriend. I mean, come on, he made me dinner three nights a week at his house, texted me good morning and good night every day, we went out for breakfast, we went on hikes, we took yoga…. we did all of the things couples do together, except, we never had a discussion about it.

This is the number one mistake most women make in their romantic situations: They do not Define The Relationship, what we refer to in our book, The Little Black Book of Big Red Flags, as “DTR.” Never, under any circumstance, assume you are a guy’s girlfriend unless you’ve actually had a conversation that concludes with a verbal agreement that you are in a committed relationship. I don’t care if he brings you flowers on your birthday or goes with you to visit your grandmother in the nursing home, until a DTR sit down has taken place, he may pull the I-never-said-you-were-my-girlfriend card at any point down the road.

Now, I consider myself to be fairly intuitive and good at reading other people’s emotions, so imagine my shock when a man I had been sleeping with regularly for over a month informed me I wasn’t his girlfriend. I was devastated. He was too, actually, which was the most confusing thing of all. But he was committed to not being in a relationship. Something he hinted at early on.  —Meagan

For more relationship and dating advice, pick up your copy of The Little Black Book of Big Red Flags, available now wherever books are sold.

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About the Author,

For more advice from Natasha, Meagan and Julie check out their dating guide, The Little Black Book of Big Red Flags: Relationship Warning Signs You Totally Spotted ... But Chose to Ignore, which they developed from their dating and relationships blog