DTR: What to Do Before You Have the Convo

Types Of Relationships:
woman in bed happy with blue pillow representing DTR: What to Do Before You Have the Convo

You guys, I met a guy. Like one I actually like and am attracted to and who seems like a really good human. And just when I had perfected my dating apocalypse outfit and its accompanying survival tools (aka accessories). Here I am in that uncomfortable in-between, not yet ready to have the DTR “will-you-be-my-boyfriend” conversation even though I’m pretty sure that’s what I want.

So, It's Been a While...

And between you and me, it’s been a second (translation: about five years) since I was in a committed relationship. Because of pride, I feel obliged to clarify that for three of those years, I was practicing self-imposed celibacy at a Zen monastery. And yes, I totally still have dirty monk fantasies, thank you for asking. Besides a weird kink that, so far as I’ve seen, doesn’t yet exist in any niche dating capacity, I’m not sure what that whole sex- and relationship-free period afforded me.

So now I'm writing this post and wondering, what did I actually learn about myself? Here goes my best attempt at distilling the wisdom of a horny monk (hey, pretty good name for a memoir, ammirite??):

Before the DTR Convo

First, I learned what it’s like to be my own boyfriend. Before you have the DTR convo, this is something I'd suggest you try. I guess some people are naturally emotionally healthy and boundaried and just know how to be in a relationship without losing themselves. Good for you, healthy, normal people![note]This exclamation has been italicized to draw your attention to its tone, which I’ve intended to be sarcastic in nature. I can’t believe you read this footnote! If it weren’t so inappropriate, I might make a comment about your attention to detail and capacity for follow through. And what that might say about your potential skill as a lover.[/note] For me, learning how to act like one of those people took a lot of internal work, and the bulk of it had to do with deriving self-esteem from my own attitudes and actions rather than from another human being. *vomits a little in mouth and swallows it*

Second, I started to see what it’s like to just be open-minded about who I’m meeting. It’s easy for me to obsess about how I’m coming across to the person I’m interested in, but it turns out I have a much better time when I’m just present with someone else and curious in what’s going on for them.

Which brings me to my third and final point: having fun. When I feel good about who I am and I’m not trying to get something from another person, the result is usually that I can actually enjoy myself. Let me say that when someone else is all, “just relax and have a good time!” I want to stab them in the throat with a pen or something. But seriously, maybe dating doesn’t have to be such a big deal? (Please note my dramatic hypocrisy here).

Thanks for helping me process, guys. You're way cheaper than a therapist. I guess I'll just try to follow my own impossible suggestions pre DTR convo. We'll see what the universe has in store. I am hoping it involves some naughty monks roleplaying. You say sacrilegious, but maybe you actually mean sacrilicious? ;)

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Kiara Noelle Kerr
Kiara Noelle Kerr
The DatePerfect team is glad to feature the racy and sometimes inappropriate perspectives Kiara brings to the table. She loves getting to write highly opinionated op-eds about why online dating sucks, how DatePerfect is trying to make it suck less, and also enjoys penning articles with sensible answers to the most asked questions in online dating. With a whole lot of online dating experience under her belt and plenty of opinions to share, Kiara’s always got something to say. More than anything, she understands the plight of the modern dater and wants to help. Are you feeling baffled, frustrated, and overwhelmed by online dating? Let Kiara know and she’ll be more than happy to commiserate and add her two cents. Thanks for reading!