How Long Should it Take for Men to Know They Want to Be Exclusive?

Dr. Wendy Walsh Dr. Wendy Walsh • 8/17/12

Reader Question:

How long when you’re dating someone should it take for them to know if they want to make it an exclusive relationship?

-Blanca R. (Rhode Island)

Dr. Wendy Walsh’s Answer:

Sounds like you know you’re ready for exclusivity before your man is. Join the club, girlfriend. Most women are ready before their boyfriend is. It’s not about the length of time, as much as the level of life integration, trust and intimacy.

  • Have you met each other’s family?
  • Have you met all of his friends?
  • Are you talking nearly daily?
  • Are you having sex?

If you answered yes to all of these questions and you don’t have a verbal commitment, you are exposing your eggs, your bloodstream and your heart to a high-risk, low-criteria relationship. Get definition or back way off.

If, on the other hand, you’ve made the mistake of moving too fast and it seems silly to be asking for a commitment after only a month or two of dating, then the problem isn’t his lack of commitment. The problem is the false intimacy you’ve created too early.


No counseling or psychotherapy advice: The Site does not provide psychotherapy advice. The Site is intended only for use by consumers in search of general information of interest pertaining to problems people may face as individuals and in relationships and related topics. Content is not intended to replace or serve as substitute for professional consultation or service. Contained observations and opinions should not be misconstrued as specific counseling advice.