Some say love is one of the most addictive drugs out there. So when you get a tiny dose of it, it’s only natural to want more and more and more. Even if it’s not quite yet love—even if it’s just mutual like and infatuation—you can sense that love might be around the corner, and even that possibility is powerfully addictive. It’s no wonder so many people dive into relationships too quickly. In fact, I’m going to be so bold as to say that many people are in the wrong relationship simply because they moved too fast before getting to know the person, and got attached without gathering all the necessary information. Then they find themselves with some sort of false, purely hormonal bond to someone who they’re really not all that happy with. Some people won’t break up because they figure, “We’ve already come this far” but they got that far by going too fast. Here are the incredible things you learn when you take a relationship slowly.
What this person is like cranky
Everybody is on their best behavior the first couple months of dating. Nothing makes them upset. They just want to get along with the person they’re dating and enjoy all the sex. It’s easy for a person to pretend certain things don’t upset them…for a limited amount of time. If you take things slowly, you get the chance to see what someone is like when they’re cranky and irritated. That’s a very important thing to see. Don’t get so attached that you don’t know how to leave someone who has anger issues.
How they’re pursuing their goals
Men will talk a big game about their dreams and goals when you’re first dating. But if you take things slowly you can see whether or not this guy is actually pursuing his goals. This is important to know, because unambitious men are a nightmare to date. They’re down on themselves because life isn’t going the way they’d hoped, but they’re also not doing anything about it. It’s very unattractive.
Is he even willing to take things slowly?
Insisting on taking things slowly is valuable if for no reason other than the fact it shows you if this guy is willing to take things slowly. You may find he gets angry when you suggest this, and asks if you’re dating other men. You don’t want to be with a guy who would rush you, or try to claim you too early.
Do you miss him when you’re apart—really?
How can you know if you miss this guy when you’re apart if you’re never apart? You know how every piece of clothing in the store seems like something you have to have, but only when you leave the store do you realize what you actually wanted? A few things end up staying with you. Guys are like that, too. They can seem great when you’re with them. But give yourself the chance to see how you feel about a guy when you’re away from him.
How he actually spends his time
If you actually give this guy some time to himself you could see how he spends is time away from you. This man is so much more than the guy you’re sleeping with. He has a social life, family life, hobbies and habits. You can only see what those are if you leave him alone.
What he’s like when he’s single
If you take things slowly, then you can see this interesting dynamic: how does he treat his dating life when he’s met someone he likes, but is still technically single? Does he go sleep with a bunch of women? You’d have no way of knowing that if you jumped into a relationship with him, and isn’t that important information to have?
What your friends think of him
If you take things slowly then your friends can actually tell you what they think of the guy. They know you the best, after all, and their opinion is valuable. But if you pronounce him your boyfriend after three weeks, your friends won’t get the chance to speak up. They’ll feel it’s too late.
Things you don’t agree on
If you take things slowly, you’ll feel more willing to disagree on things. If you’re already talking about moving in together, you may end up pretending you agree on things because at this point, it’s too scary to disagree. But if you have little skin in this game, then you can be honest when you disagree on something. Then you can see how that plays out.
What he thinks about you when you’re single
You can also see what this guy thinks about the way you spend your single life. You like him, he likes you, but you’re both still technically single. Does he get angry if you go on dates with other men? Does he still feel entitled to knowing what you’re doing every night?
What he thinks about how you spend your time
You should also give this guy a chance to see how he feels about how you spend your days. He should get a peek at your hobbies, your social life, how you spend your free time and so on. You should be with someone who accepts you for how you are and how you spend your time. You can’t know that if you jump into things.
Whether or not you can take things slowly
This will also be an interesting test to see if you can take things slowly. Can you resist the urge to text him every day? Can you let a weekend night go by without seeing him, and just be with your friends? Can you still go on dates with other men and see what’s out there?
How to have an argument before you’re too attached
It’s important to see how both of you behave when you become upset with each other, and are not yet committed to each other. It would be a shame to find out later that this is the type of guy who just disappears for four days during an argument.
If he is a good planner
There is no need to make actual plans if you don’t leave one another’s sides. But you should see if this guy can make plans. You don’t want to wind up with a poor organizer, and a downright unreliable man.
If he’s a good communicator
There is also no need to communicate when you’re always together! Spend time apart so you can see if he makes an effort to call you when you’re not right next to him.
You usually take things too fast
If you’re having to look into the benefits of taking things slowly then you probably tend to move too fast. You should be proud of yourself for recognizing that, and trying to change it. It’s the first step to finding a relationship that actually has lasting power.