I Want To Be Exclusively Dating My Guy But I Don’t Want To Scare Him Away

“Hey Orna and Matthew,

I want to be exclusively dating my guy, but I’m afraid I’ll scare him away if I ask for an exclusive relationship. Things are going well but he hasn’t stepped up to claim me yet.

The thing is I know I’ve scared away other guys in the past by wanting things to move forward quickly, but this time I’ve been going with the flow and letting him lead.

I’ve been upfront with him from the beginning that I want an exclusive relationship, and he told me he’s also looking for that. It’s been a few months and he hasn’t mentioned exclusively dating me.

What can I do?


Hi Tricia,

Exclusivity is an important step in a new relationship. It says you’re ready to turn off your dating profiles and discover if this budding romance has an opportunity to grow into something special. There’s so much hope riding on this decision, and too many people rush into exclusivity because they’re excited by the instant intimacy they feel with someone new.

Do you really know he wants the same things you want? And how do you decipher his intentions so that you can feel confident moving forward?

The first question you need to ask yourself is, “Are you ready for an exclusive relationship?”

What Are The Signs That You’re Not Ready For An Exclusive Relationship?

  1. He Only Reaches Out Last Minute

If he isn’t planning dates with you ahead of time then he may not be interested in an exclusive relationship. He may like the convenience of dating you and enjoy your company, but that doesn’t mean he’s ready for more. Pay attention to his response when you’re unavailable, and how far in advance he asks you out again. A guy who wants a convenient relationship without a commitment will disappear as soon as you stop dropping everything to see him.

  1. He Doesn’t Include You In His Life

A man who’s interested in exclusively dating you will introduce you to his friends and family. He’s not keeping his personal life a mystery; he wants you to be part of it. If you know nothing about his friends or his family, then he’s not serious about you because he’s simply looking for a good time.

  1. You’re The One Moving Things Forward

Just because you’re ready for exclusivity doesn’t mean he is. If you’re moving things forward, then there’s no space for him to step up. Back off and see if he steps up for you. See if he will fill the gap you’ve left by making sure the two of you connect regularly. You’ll discover if he’s ready for an exclusive relationship with you. A guy who isn’t ready will become scarce as soon as you stop putting in the effort.

  1. Your Relationship Is Mostly About Sex

You have an amazing physical connection and can’t keep your hands off each other. The sex is amazing, but you never go out and spend time out in the world together. You’re not going on traditional dates or spending time connecting emotionally. You’re not meeting one another’s friends or family, and the relationship is on the down low (you don’t even tell your friends about it). This is a sign that neither of you is ready to date exclusively.

  1. You Barely Know Each Other But Have An Intense Connection

You’ve had a few dates and feel like you’ve met your soulmate. The conversation flowed easily, and you have a lot in common. It can be intoxicating to have a great connection right away, but that intense feeling is not enough to start exclusively dating. Slow down and get to know each other first. Take time to discover if you share the same relationship values and want the same things out of life before going exclusive.

Most people jump into an exclusive relationship the instant they feel a connection. They don’t take the time to discover who that person is and if they are a good match for the long term. They trust their gut and dive in heart first.

Ultimately, this is a recipe for wasting years with short-term relationships (roughly 3-8 months each). When you go too fast, you end up having to start all over when it doesn’t work out. By slowing things down and dating a lot of people over time it becomes obvious when and who you’re ready to start dating exclusively.

What Are The Signs That You Are Moving Towards Exclusively Dating?

  1. Allow The Cream To Rise To The Top

Date a lot of people and get a rotation going with a few guys. This way, you can compare how you feel with each of them. Use dating as a tool to learn more about yourself and the dynamic you want between you and a beloved life partner. Dating this way, the cream will rise to the top and the man who is an ideal match for you will stand out above the rest.

  1. He’s Moving The Relationship Forward

A man who’s ready for an exclusive relationship will not be subtle about it, he will be clear that he wants to be with you. He’s moving the relationship forward by introducing you to his friends and family and booking you for future dates. You’ll never have to guess what his intentions are.

  1. Survived The First Conflict

Conflict is inevitable in all of your relationships, particularly an intimate one. Love can be messy and it’s important to know that you can have a disagreement and reconnect with each other. If you’re ignoring disagreements, avoiding conflict, or not taking time to repair them, then your relationship is a ticking time bomb waiting to implode. However, if you’ve moved through conflicts and you’re able to reconnect and create a deeper connection with each other, then you may have found your special someone.

  1. You’re Both Being Authentic

Authenticity is the key to emotional intimacy. When you’re both authentic by sharing feelings, then you can begin building trust together. Authentic communication allows you to feel safe. No one is walking on eggshells or twisting into a pretzel to get love. Accepting each other “As Is,” allows both of you to flourish. This is a great sign that you’re ready for an exclusive relationship!

  1. He Honors Your Requests

Pay attention to how he responds when you make a request. If he honors your requests or makes his best effort, that’s a sign that he cares for and respects you. However, if he gets defensive, makes a big deal about it, or downplays your feelings, then don’t waste your time. This guy is not ready for an exclusive relationship and it’s not your job to teach him how to behave like a grown-up.

  1. He Wants To Make You Happy

When a man is interested in a relationship with you, he wants to make you happy. He’ll be curious about your likes and dislikes. He’ll make an effort to fulfill your wishes, and he will try to impress you. He knows that if he can make you happy, he can win your heart.

How To Ask For An Exclusive Relationship

If you’ve determined that your man is interested in you, how do you take that next step and move into an exclusive relationship? You don’t want to seem too forward or scare him off, and you don’t want to just sit back waiting and hoping that he takes the next step.

Asking him for exclusivity puts you in the masculine role. It forces him to decide, which may not bring you the clarity you seek. He may like you but may be unsure about the future with you. He might agree to exclusivity because he doesn’t want to lose you, or he may feel pressured and back off. Either way, you’ve lost a great opportunity to know his heart.

Instead, let him know how you’re feeling and share your vision of the future you’re creating. Let him know that you desire to be in an exclusive relationship with a man who wants the same things. Don’t be subtle or coy, hoping he’ll pick up on your hints. Be clear about who you are and what you want. Leave space for him to either see his future with you or not.

Be prepared to move on if he wants to leave things in the gray. You don’t want to waste your time hoping that he will one day step up to claim you. A guy who is unsure about you now may never be sure, and you deserve better. A man who wants to share his life with you will make sure no other man can come along to take you off the market.

If you walk away and he comes chasing after you, ask him what changed. Why is he interested in exclusively dating you now? Be sure to define the relationship rather than going back to being uncertain of his plans for the future.

Men are not subtle about their desires when they like a woman and want an exclusive relationship. You won’t have to decipher each clue looking for a sign that he’s ready. He’ll let you know and act accordingly. Pay attention to his actions if you want to know how he feels about you.

If you find yourself regularly pursuing men, frustrated that they don’t step up, or you can’t seem to meet a man who is ready for a relationship then it’s time for new dating strategies. Take the mystery out of dating and download our free report, “7 Steps To Soulmating.” You’ll receive our top dating strategies that have helped thousands to change their love patterns and finally create their soulmate relationship.

About the authors

Love Coaches Orna and Matthew Walters

Orna and Matthew Walters are soulmate coaches and prolific writers about love. Finding love, keeping love, healing from heartbreak, bringing in your beloved and more. They have been published on MSN, Yahoo!, YourTango, Redbook, and have been featured guest experts on BRAVO’s THE MILLIONAIRE MATCHMAKER with Patti Stanger, and as guests with Esther Perel speaking about love and intimacy.

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