Ah, The DRT talk, AKA the Define the Relationship Talk. You are thinking about it and you want to know where you stand with your current dating partner: Are they seeing other people? Are you into them enough to be exclusive? Is it time to be with just one person?
Most of the time this talk comes out of a selfish place, not the place it should come from. I didn’t have to sit down and have a similar talk with any of my friends to make sure we had equal parts in the relationship; it was built over time and we still secured a great relationship.
We don’t have a DTR talk with our friends, so why have it with our partners?
The different types of DTR talks:
The persuasive DTR talk: The speaker is pretty much begging the reciprocating party to be exclusive as a means to finally secure the relationship. If you have to begin a relationship with persuasion you will defiantly be ending it with persuasion via lawyer during the divorce.
The sneaky DTR talk: This happen to me once. We had a conversation and in the end we were exclusive. I didn’t know what hit me. As it turns out less than two months later we were arguing and, in three, broken up. There is only one kind of sneak attack (aka sleep sex) I like and it has nothing to do with DTR talks.
The “we have to talk” DTR talk: Texts or messages that begin with “we have to talk” end with the other person feeling more like a child than a partner. The listener doesn’t want to feel like they are about to be ambushed, they want to feel like a participant. These four words never go over well in any situation, so I would never again use them in a sentence together.
Here are a few suggestions to avoid less stressful and more natural talks:
If you are really into the person and you are feeling like you really want to have the talk, hold off and let the other person bring it up. This will show you if the other person is on the same page, simply by letting them bring it up. If they don’t care who else you are running around with, chances are they don’t mind if you are seeing other people. If you are ready for the talk and they aren’t, unrequited love will take place. Time to move on.
This talk should be very natural when it is right. Forcing this talk or demanding an answer is a sure sign that someone will not be ready but may give into the pressure, which later down the line leads to breakups. Play it cool.
The Cynical Therapist came to be when two therapists became friends. SoulMates or Kindered Spirit Animals… Call us what you will…. We are two bad*** chics Licensed to teach you how to grow into your full potential and add some humor along the way.
Laurie Wilson and Elle Anzalone are both Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist practicing in Huntington Beach, CA.