The Dreaded DTR (Defining The Relationship)

The Dreaded DTR (Defining The Relationship)

More proof that we are driving ourselves from a monogamous society

So, you're sitting there thinking about that guy or girl that you've been "talking" to (also known as "a way to test out a relationship to see if it would work with a set of ridiculous unspoken rules that are never clear"), and you want to know what's next. You've been having a good time with them, but have no idea where you stand with them. Are you exclusive? Are you "dating?" Are they saying the same nice stuff that they say to you to other people? Is there any future with this person at all, or are they just wasting your time? Once the questions start, they never stop until you do the dreaded DTR.

No one wants to be the first to DTR (define the relationship) because they don't want to seem too clingy, but it eventually needs to happen.

Stereotypically in the past, if a boy starts the DTR conversation, it's negative; usually in a way that either dissolves the "relationship" completely, or cuts off romantic pieces of the relationship and sticks the partner with "let's just be friends".

Now don't get me wrong here, girls can be part of this negative stereotype conversation as well. In fact, girls have been more likely to do this in the past few years with the ever popular sticking them in the "friend-zone" (the inescapable place girls put their old potential partners in hopes of being friends while she eventually finds someone else).

It's important to know that there are only a couple different ways that a DTR conversation can go.

First, and most common, there is the situation where one person likes the other much more than the other. This often results in either the "friend-zone" or a friends with benefits relationship. Sadly, people would much rather be friends with an addition of physical interactions in an unromantic nature than have just a friendship with a person. I personally believe that this is because the person who likes the other party more wants them to be so happy that they will literally put their own happiness on the line and torture themselves for the other person. And guess what? That person torturing themselves will most likely never get credit for what they do for the other person. Also, the person loses respect by the other party once physical actions start as the friendship awkwardly diminishes until all that's left is a booty call. How sad of a world do we live in? The only other solution in this situation is to ghost each other and hold the amazing ability to be able to walk right past each other without showing any sign that you used to have feelings for each other, or even know each other in general. Slay on the outside, hurt on the inside. That's the motto today, right?

Second, and rather rare, is the actual relationship that comes from the conversation. You both decide that you want to pursue the relationship further and become "official".

DTR is one of those "keep your hopes high but expectations low" kind of deal. Good job 21st century for continuing to drive society away from a monogamous culture.

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An Open Letter To My Boyfriend's Mom

A simple thank you is not enough.

Your son and I have been dating a while now and I just wanted to thank you for everything.

Wow, where do I start? Ever since the day your son brought me into your home you have shown me nothing but kindness. I have not one negative thought about you and I am truly thankful for that. I first and foremost want to thank you for welcoming me with open arms. There are horror stories of mothers resenting their son's girlfriends and I am blessed there is no resentment or harsh feelings.

Thank you for treating me like one of your children, with so much love but knowing exactly when to tease me.

Thank you for sticking up for me when your son teases me, even though I know it’s all in good fun it's always comforting knowing you have someone by your side.

Thank you for raising a man who respects women and knows how to take responsibility of mistakes and not a boy who is immature and doesn’t take responsibility.

Thank you for always including me in family affairs, I may not be blood family but you do everything you can to make sure I feel like I am.

Thank you for letting me make memories with your family.

There is nothing I value more in this world then memories with friends and family and I am thankful you want and are willing to include me in yours. I have so much to thank you for my thoughts keep running together.

The most important thing I have to thank you for is for trusting me with your son. I know how precious and valuable he is and I won't break his heart. I will do everything I can to make him happy. This means more than you could ever imagine and I promise I will never break your trust.

The second most important thing I must thank you for is for accepting me for who I am. Never have you ever wished I looked like another girl or acted like another girl. You simply love and care for me and that’s all I could ever ask. Every person in this world is a unique different person and understanding that means a lot.

The third most important thing I must thank you is teaching me how to one day in the future treat a potential girlfriend that I may interact with as a mother. I am not a mother, but I one day plan to be. If I ever have a son it is because of how you treated me that I am able to be a humble loving mother to this new face that could one day walk into my door. How you have treated me has taught me how I should one day be in the future and I thank you for that.

This may seem all over the place but that’s how my brain gets when I try and thank you for everything you have done for me. It’s all so much and even the little things are so important so I promise my scattered thoughts are all with good intentions and not meant to bombard you. I just want to get the idea across to you that you are important and special to me and everything you do does not go unnoticed.


Your Son’s Girlfriend

Cover Image Credit: Christian Images and Quotes

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Short Fiction on odyssey: Mother, Part V

One clock in particular seemed to catch her eye. He didn't have to look to know which one it was.


A bell rang as someone opened the door, startling Will from his work. He sighed, not wanting to get up and deal with people. He brushed his hands on his jeans, forcing himself to greet his customer. At this rate, he was at risk of having to close Like Clockwork.

Strolling through his little shop wasn't just any customer, though. Avalyn Rosewood. The name filled him with nerves and excitement. Her chestnut hair was pinned up today, wisps framing her green eyes. As always, her tanned skin seemed to glow, especially in here surrounded by wood and antique clocks.

One clock, in particular, seemed to catch her eye. He didn't have to look to know which one it was.

Nestled in a cabinet-clock, he felt its pull. It had to be the oldest one here, but there was something timeless about it. He watched her pick it up gingerly, studying the tiny pocket watch. The surface had an elegant swirl of trees and running figures. Leading this wild group was a majestic looking woman, both wild and regal at the same time.

It was captivating, just like her.

She popped open the watch, surprise filling her face. He knew what she saw. The interior of the watch was vibrant and magnetic. The inside was rich with the night sky. Minute stars smattered the face, surrounding a kneeling man on a hill. It was a curious sight.

The crown of the watch was simple. It was a gold arrow, pointing up. Her hand inched towards it, and his insides tightened.

"I wouldn't do that if I were you."

Ava jumped, nearly dropping the antique. "Will! You scared me."

He smiled apologetically, carefully taking the watch out of her hands. "I'm sorry, are you OK?"

She rubbed her throat nervously as if it would calm her. She eyed the antique in his hand with longing. "I'm fine, but what shouldn't I do?"

He furrowed his eyebrows, confused for a moment. Her eyes distracted him. "Oh, you mean with the watch? If you pull the crown up, the watch tends to break and it takes forever to put it back together." He explained.

"Oh, that's unfortunate."

He laughed, nodding. Indeed, the watch would come apart and would take hours to restore. "Unfortunately. It's my favorite one here."

She looked around the room, confused. "So why do you keep it in this clock instead of your office or somewhere more secure?"

The question made his eyes glaze over. He felt dizzy. It felt like a cloud decided to take cover in his head. There was an answer, but he couldn't find it. He brushed away the familiar sensation. It always crept up around this pocket watch. He didn't want that feeling anywhere near him, which is partly why he kept it here. "I don't know, it just felt right to put it here."

She forced a laugh, clearly uncomfortable. "It's OK, we all have our things. So how long have you worked here?"

This was a safe question. The cloud immediately dissipated and he allowed himself to relax. "Since I can remember. It was my father's shop. Before him, it was his father's. And so on. This shop has been a second home for me; probably more home than actual home, you know?"

Her eyes agreed, but her lips pursed. "You're a law student, though. What do you plan on doing once you have your degree and license?"

He shrugged. "I'll still run it on the side like I do now." Ava turned away, studying the clocks behind her. Watching her turn away reminded him of yesterday when she ran out on him. She looked like she had seen a ghost, splitting with no explanation. Now here she was—again, with no explanation.

"Sorry about yesterday." she blurted. Her back was still to him, another clock in her hands. It made him happy to see her here, in his environment. For months, he had been working up the courage to talk to her. When they saw each other in the coffee shop, the moment seemed right. The rest of the day, though, he felt he had blown it. Yet, here she stood.

He smiled. "No need to apologize. Is everything OK?"

Now it was her turn for her eyes to glaze over. She shook her head and reached up to place the clock back on its shelf. "It was just a misunderstanding."

Before he could offer to help, though, the clock she was struggling to put up slipped out of her grasp and shattered at their feet. All he could do was stare. Fifteen hundred dollars lay in pieces below him, and all thoughts of flirting were gone.

"Will, I'm so sorry––."

"Please just leave."

"I can pay you back, how––."

"Fifteen hundred dollars." Will snapped. "Do you have fifteen hundred dollars?"

She blinked in surprise, hurt in her eyes. He couldn't think of that right now. He was on the brink of bankruptcy and he just lost over a grand. "Just leave, Ava."

"William, there must be something––."


She straightened, more angry than hurt now. "Fine." She huffed, getting to her feet. She crossed over him, then paused, turning back. She grabbed the pocket watch and yanked the crown up, tossing the antique at his feet. "Consider me gone." He winced when the door slammed behind her.

Then he collapsed.

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Shoaib SR on Unsplash

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