Should You Have "The Commitment Talk" With Him?

Knowing where you stand with a guy in a relationship is all-important. How can you make sure you have a grip on where your relationship is headed?


Dear Emily:

I've been seeing this guy since February. The end of April I went out to a club with my girlfriend and he was there with another girl! I was so upset, but I kept my cool and pretended he wasn't there!

Two weeks went by when he finally called. I answered the call he proceeded to tell me that he was sorry, and that he didn't do it on purpose. He also informs me that I shouldn't have been upset with him because we never established a relationship.

He told me that he really likes me and wants to hang out and get to know me better.

Since then we've been hanging out alot more! We've been on lots of dates like a trip to Miami, movies, dinners, clubs, even grocery shopping!

The issues that I have are that I'm a flight attendant and he's a party promoter. So we both stay busy. We see each other once maybe twice a week. I would like to spend more quality time, but I don't want to seem too needy.

I'm tired of implementing the "Rules"! Not calling him and letting him call me. Pretending not to care so much, when I really do.

Wanting to ask where our relationship is headed.

Should I ask where it's going, or continue to be stuck in a rut?

I feel a great connection but when or will he ask for a commitment?!

I don't want to scare him off!


Ariel (Orlando, FL)


Hello Ariel,

This is a great question that is on sooo many women's minds. How do we have "The Talk" about where the relationship is heading?

Some women wonder if it's even necessary to have "The Talk" at all.

Rest assured that OHHH's VERY necessary!

First, lets talk about when you should have "The Talk".

1. If you have been dating for more than 3 to 6 months regularly in person. E-mails and phone calls do not count as dating.

2. Preferably before you start sleeping together. If you have slept together then anytime after that is more than appropriate.

Next, let's talk about how to get the details in order. That way, you can minimized potential distractions and/or frustrations:

1. Choose a quiet private place to talk.

2. Make sure you are in the right frame of mind to be able to engage in as calm and reasonable a discussion as possible. When feelings are involved it is hard to talk sometimes.

3. Make sure the timing is good for the both of you. There shouldn't be any real time constraints.

I know you might very well be nervous when it comes time, but no matter what empower yourself with the notion that staying stuck in a "rut" is no way to live!

Believe me, I understand the fear of talking about moving the relationship forward. You maybe worried that he will get scared off and never talk to you again.

So I challenge you to think about WHY it is important to you to move the relationship forward.

Doing so will help your resolve in making sure "The Talk" actually happens.

Do you want be exclusive and feel safe that there is no one else in his life?

Are you looking forward to getting married and perhaps having kids?

Who of us wants to spend unnecessary time with someone who will never commit to us, if that's our goal?

There is nothing wrong with wanting any of those things.

Avoiding "The Talk" serves no real productive purpose.

If YOU are avoiding it then it's to keep from scaring him off. If HE is avoiding it then it's to keeping you from leaving.

If you want to get on the fast-track to "settling", then feel free to continue avoiding "The Talk".

But if you want more out of your relationship, then have "The Talk" with him.

So what exactly gets said during "The Talk"?

I'm glad you asked!

Write down your what you want to say. Bring your notes with you just in case you get distracted and forget some of the important things to talk about.

Ask him what he would like out of an ideal relationship.

Ask what vision he has for himself a year from now. Note here that I did not say for the two of you. You want him to be free to answer honestly and from the heart.

Then, state what you want out of life and your view of an idea relationship.

When I was single I would let the men I liked know that I don't date anyone for more than a year with out the prospect of marriage.

I would also share with them my beliefs about relationships.

I happen to believe that when a man knows he has the woman of his dreams he will usually realize it within a year.

Then ask him his thoughts on the matter. What is holding him back from being able to commit to an exclusive relationship in general and/or with you specifically?

Can whatever it is be resolved, or not? Was there simply a misunderstanding somewhere along the way? Are the differences between you too great for there to be any long-term potential?

Have two or three outcomes in mind along with your actions that follow logically.

For example:

If he can't envision embarking upon an exclusive relationship with you right now or in the very near future then your action would be to let him know first that you are glad he was honest with you.

But the truth is that you have a different goal in mind for yourself and as much as you like or love him you must move on.

If he is unsure of things, you may want to give him time to think about his goals and what he wants out of life. That way he will be able to process what life would be potentially like with or without you are in that picture or not.

Who knows? He may have being wanting to move the relationship forward but was worried that you didn't. Having found that you are on the same page, your plan of action could be to stay with him as long as the relationship keeps moving forward in a reasonable way.

I wish you all the real happiness life has to offer.

Have fun,

Emily McKay

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