It’s a dating dilemma that many single people can relate to. You’ve found someone great, and you hope they stick around for the long haul. But you’ve been dating for a few months now and you’re still not sure how they feel about you.
While you’re ready to delete your dating apps, book a bunch of cute weekend vacations, and start your wedding inspiration board on Pinterest, they seem to go mysteriously silent on WhatsApp when you try to pin down their intentions.
While there’s nothing wrong with a casual arrangement, things can get tricky if you and the person you’re dating aren’t on the same page about engagement.
Pay attention and look for the signs, as you’ll often be able to tell when someone isn’t ready for a relationship.
1. They don’t talk about the future with you
One sign of a healthy relationship is making plans for the future together, or at the very least dating someone who takes their life decisions into account.
“Not talking about the future with you is a great sign that someone will never make a commitment,” said relationship expert Margaret Bankole. “They can dance around it, they can give breadcrumbs when you ask, but they’ll never lift it.” Also beware of people who give false hopes for a future, but never go into details. “
Basically, if the person you fall in love with is still talking about traveling solo or moving to another city without you, that could be a key sign that you are not a top priority in their life.
2. You haven’t met their friends or family
It’s okay to wait a bit before introducing a potential partner to those around you, but if it’s been several months and you’ve still not met anyone else in their life, it might not be a good sign. .
As Bankole explains, âWhen someone wants you to be a long-term part of their life, they will be happy to introduce you to their family and friends, and they will be proud to do so. Taking this step also shows that they have nothing to hide.
“If you’ve been dating someone for a year and they haven’t given basic introductions, it’s a clear sign that they’re never going to engage, and they’re shackling you and keeping you a secret.”
3. They cancel on you all the time
Do they constantly give up on you at the last minute, because they’re hungover, or has something better happened? Someone who is committed to a future relationship will take the time to see you, even if that isn’t totally right for them.
âCanceling all the time means you’re an option until something happens, and if they cancel frequently, you’re probably one of the few options,â Bankole cautions.
4. They only seem interested in sex
You had a hard day at work and needed a shoulder to cry on, but they didn’t pick up the phone. You needed someone to help you move furniture, but it was already busy. Yet when you text a string of suggestive emojis, they respond right away.
Bankole says this behavior is âobviousâ when it comes to spotting an engagement phobe. âMany are so caught up in sex that they fail to consider what the relationship is based on. If there is little conversation, or if the conversation is always of a sexual nature, it is safe to say that it is. is purely physical.
5. They avoid relational conversation
Every time you try to conjure up the atrocious “So where is this going?” chat, they skillfully redirect the conversation in another direction. Or, they send you back a vague declaration of affection (“You know, I think you’re great”) that doesn’t give you any specific information about where you are.
âIf you have to strike up a conversation about the relationship, or feel like you’re dragging it out, you probably do,â Bankole points out. “When a person wants to be in a relationship with you, they have no qualms about saying so or becoming exclusive.”
6. They are always hiding on dating apps
If your current adventure is still chatting with potential matches on Hinge, Bumble, or Tinder when they know you’re interested in a relationship with them, that’s a pretty big red flag.
âHiding on dating apps is basically keeping your options open,â Bankole explains. “If the person you see keeps their options open, they probably won’t want to commit to you.”
She believes that “when something goes right it goes both ways” – and that if you’re willing to commit, you’ll be “so in love with the person, that the last thing you want to do is keep looking. “.
If you’ve nodded with those points, Bankole says it’s probably a sign that your romance is destined to wear out. But try not to sink into a negative hole of self-doubt if this is the case, as there are many more fish favorable to engagement in the sea.