So, say you meet a guy or girl and you guys hit it off. Actually, you guys have been hitting it off for, let's say, four months. Too short? Maybe six? (If we get too far, my point will have been lost). At first, you guys were taking things slow and transitioning into exclusivity but now, it's just the two of you. You both are fully aware and completely trusting of the other.

But now what? You guys aren't boyfriend and girlfriend? The only talk you two had was about being exclusive. But what is exclusive? Ideally, it's focusing on just each other, but not boyfriend and girlfriend. Because these are two labels that you aren't ready for, but you're entirely ready for what comes with the labels. Let's say you have or have not met the parents, but what is that to you nowadays? You have each other over for family events and what not. But the moment someone asks if you are dating someone or in a relationship, you quickly shut that down. "But I saw you with ____ the other day?" "Yeah, we've been seeing each other." Okay? But you guys are exclusive to seeing each other, right? You both are expecting so much from each other and the "relationship" but you won't give it the credit it deserves?

Oh yeah, and don't forget, social media cannot know about them yet. All your friends and family have met them, but social media is a no-go. Why? Some would say "hoes" and maybe others are protecting themselves from getting hurt and/or embarrassed, but personally, I'd go with the former choice.

I think the world of dating now has become so complex that not even I, an almost 22-year-old, can keep up with. And I think, what exactly has become so hard about it? I get the trial period of a relationship to see if you two are somewhat compatible. I just don't get the lengths of them and I think people are a bit too dramatic about the length nowadays. First, you have to make sure you like them enough to be exclusive, then spend the next few months making sure everyone else in your life likes them. Then you spend a few months taking trips together or even going through a period of which you see each other on a different level. But after everything has become comfortable between you two, when is enough, enough? When you guys are getting into the everyday routine of a relationship, when do you actually call it a "relationship?"

If you are spending most weekends with someone, meeting (or not meeting, not a specific criterion for some) their family, going on various dates with them, communicating throughout the day, meeting all (or any) of their close friends, being each other's emotional support, sleeping together, and going on trips with them to places that are at least an hour outside of you two's range; I'm sorry to say this, but you two are boyfriend and girlfriend (I feel like I'm in 6th grade again saying these words), you are in a relationship with one another, and that shouldn't have to be communicated. I understand there should be some sort of talk between the transition of you two cutting yourselves off from the dating world, but is that not enough? Are effort and time not enough for you to think that maybe you guys are actually a thing without having to have that conversation?

This thinking is either old-school or unrealistic or maybe a bit of both? To be fair, I am a very up-front kind of person and maybe that's my downfall when I muse on the idea of dating. If I am doing all of the aforementioned things, you and I are dating and I don't want to feel as if I have to hold your hand and baby you by calling you "boyfriend" for you to take me seriously. So, when are we all too old to have to use labels for us to take each other seriously?