Things change in our lives. Our priorities change, preferences, goals, and the way we live our lives. This also affects our dating needs. We all have different sexual preferences, and even that can change. However, we’re talking about whether you want something serious and stable vs. being casual.
Before we even start talking about this subject let’s make something clear – there’s no right or wrong. It’s all about understanding yourself and being honest. We’re not here to try and convince you of going with one or another.
We’re just going to try and help you understand what you might like better and where you are currently in your dating life.
Difference Between Dating and Being Casual
The most significant difference between being casual and in a serious relationship is how exclusive and committed you are. When dating casually, you don’t have to limit yourself to one partner or worry about hitting it off with different people.
Furthermore, you don’t have to worry about your partner, talk to them, go on dates, visit his/her parents, and so on. When dating seriously, people are almost always exclusive and monogamous. Of course, different relationships have different levels of commitment.
The important thing is that serious dating means being exclusively involved with one person. Both of these approaches to dating have their own ups and downs. But these “ups and downs” change from one person to another. So how can you know which one is right for you?
Are You Good on Your Own, or Do You Need Someone to Share Feelings with?
One of the strongest driving factors for people who get into serious relationships is the fact that they feel emotionally unfulfilled when alone. Simply put, some people need that special someone to share their feelings and lives with.
Some people want to talk about their day, work, what they’ve done, and so on. On the other hand, some people want to share their deepest thoughts daily and understand them.
In most cases, these people jump in from one relationship into another. They are used to being in relationships all the time. On the other hand, some people don’t feel comfortable sharing their feelings and talking about them. They deal with them on their own and don’t want to let anyone in.
Feeling of Loneliness
People who like to date casually without involving anyone deeply in their lives are usually loners. They like to rely on themselves and organize their days to the fullest. They are responsible on their own and don’t need someone else that will make them want to get their act together.
These kinds of people are independent and don’t need someone else to have fun. In fact, they can go out and find fun on their own. Sometimes this “fun” is a casual hookup with someone at the club. But on the other hand, some people simply need to be with someone.
These people feel empty and like they are going nowhere in their lives without a partner. Loneliness is its biggest threat, and the more you are lonely, the more negative thoughts you will have. This isn’t something abnormal; it happens to everyone depending on the stage in their lives.
Changing Partners VS a Single Partner
This one is pretty much simple, do you like changing partners often or not? If you do, you’re probably more suited for casual dating. If you need to cheat on your partner and look at other people, flirt with them, and reach out to someone new, you’re simply not in a place for a serious commitment.
This is also where most people have controversial opinions. No, there’s nothing wrong with being monogamous nor changing partners. It’s up to you to figure out what you like best. Just because you were bored with one person, in particular, doesn’t mean that you’re ready to have open relationships.
Sometimes your relationships can simply stagnate and become dull. But this doesn’t mean that you wouldn’t be able to work well with someone else. On the other hand, casual is the right way to go if you like something new and fresh happening regularly.
Do You Fall in Love Easily?
Lots of people say that they “fall in love easily”. This is also called “emophilia”, and it comes with many different traits that can also lead to quick romantic relationships. The main reason these kinds of people fall in love really quickly is that they get “rewarded” for these feelings.
For example, people who attach to others anxiously often fall in love to get rid of their anxiety or fear. There could be several underlying issues that make people fall in love so quickly. But before you can get to those, you will probably have to know one thing – don’t try to be casual.
If you are this kind of person, you WILL fall in love after a one-night stand. This will only cause you pain because the other person won’t have any feelings for you. They might use and manipulate you to have fun and then simply shut you down.
If your nature is to fall in love easily and quickly forget about hooking up. It’s best to look for serious commitment and take things slowly. Consider postponing sex and romance until you’ve met someone and learned whether they are a good person for you.
You Put Meaning Behind Sex
To some people, sex is just like exercising. There’s nothing big or meaningful about it. All they see is a way for blowing off some steam and enjoying themselves. Some people can do this and have this kind of view on sex. For them, casual sex isn’t anything strange or difficult – it comes naturally.
If you don’t think about the person you’ve had sex with, reach out to them, or feel the need to do something more with them, you probably don’t put a lot of meaning on sex. In other words, this makes you perfect for casual dating as it’s all about sex and no strings attached.
But if sex has meaning to you and there is an emotional relationship, you’re better off without flings. It all comes down to your view of sex and who you are as a person really. You can’t have meaningless sex if it means something to you.
You Want to Do Things with Other People Apart From Having Sex
People in relationships do all kinds of things together. It’s one of the traits of being in a committed relationship. You share moments together, do things you’ve never done before, and invite each other to all kinds of events.
If this is something you like doing with your partners, you are used to being in serious relationships. Casual sex is all about having sex whenever you can and nothing else. Of course, you will spend some time together, but there will be no deep conversations or making plans together.
If you catch yourself doing this, then you are probably looking for something more than just meaningless sex. Fuck buddies can often not hear or see each other for weeks. This shows that they aren’t committed in any way and only want to enjoy themselves when it “fits their schedule.”
You’re Bothered When Someone Tries to Get Close to You
Serious emotional attachments require intimacy and closeness. They require getting to know each other, talking about what matters to you, who you are as a person, revealing your fears, and so on. Some people simply aren’t ready for that and don’t want others getting close to them.
If you don’t want to open up, send good morning texts, or hold hands while walking in public, it’s completely fine. You’re just not that person at the moment. Still, in some cases, you simply might not want to get closer with some person in particular.
This feeling is rarely universal. Everyone can find “that person” they were looking for and want to share everything with them and fall in love. But you shouldn’t force yourself to be emotional if this isn’t something you feel. Always listen to yourself and what your heart wants.
How Much you Value Initial Attraction is Important
It takes time to develop relationships. Lots of people are thrilled mainly by the initial physical attraction that fades away over time. If your serious relationships fail and you lose interest, you probably aren’t actually interested in a commitment.
In other words, you just want to enjoy the sexual thrill that feels fresh and new for a certain amount of time. But people who assess their feelings can create a serious relationship that will last for a long time.
Apart from still being attracted to each other, people in serious relationships share commitments and closeness. They build a close bond between them by going through beautiful and difficult times together while being there for each other every step of the way. In other words, even relationships that are supposed to be serious are casual at first.
There is a period when everything is perfect, and the sheer attraction and excitement can compensate for all the issues, differences, and disagreements you have. If you don’t want to work on your relationship after the initial thrills are gone, you don’t have what it takes to be serious towards someone.
Sharing with Your Partners
Committed relationships require more trust and transparency than casual ones. This means talking to each other all the time, texting, and messaging. Couples spend a lot of time together and know what happens with their significant other, outside of the time they spend together.
With casual relationships, things are more “relaxed.” People can see each other one week and meet up again after 20 days without questions asked. If you want to know what their partner is doing and likes to share his/her stuff, then being casual might not be the right fit.
Friends with benefits are about keeping it superficial, having a good laugh, exploring your sexual fantasies, and not having any commitments. Once you get back to your regular life, you shouldn’t be thinking about each other, texting, and telling each other how your days are going.
You Aren’t Shy of Cancelling Plans or Standing up Your Date
When you are serious about someone, you want to do everything in your power to make them feel special and spend as much time as you can together. This is a crucial difference from casual dating. Being commitment-free means that you actually don’t care about the other person.
At least not in a way where that person comes before any other plans you might have in your life. That’s why people aren’t even invested when they are just fuck buddies. Being stood up is a normal thing as you don’t have any commitment to each other.
But this also means that there are no hard feelings when this happens, and this means on both sides. If you feel sad that someone stood you up, you probably already have emotions for them, or you’re simply too engaged in your relationship.
Even worse, if you don’t want to cancel your date because of your other plans, you probably aren’t the type.
Being in a casual or committed relationship can both be good. It’s all about doing some introspection and understanding what you actually need. But you should also remember that things change, and just because you’ve dated your whole life casually, that doesn’t mean that won’t change at some point.
Take the time to analyse yourself and set your priorities. This will help you learn what kind of relationships you’re into, but they will also be better because you don’t have any doubts in your mind.