It's time to move on from these outdated relationship rules.
- Don’t kiss on the first date
It’s time to stop pretending that physical chemistry is not important in a relationship, even at the very beginning. While the first date is traditionally about getting to know someone to see if they’re worth pursuing with a second date, physical connection is important too, and everyone has a different level of comfort. If you smooch before you even go on a date, or wait until the second month for a kiss on the cheek, what does it matter? Rules shouldn’t dictate our varying comfort levels and preferences when it comes to physical connection. If you kiss or not kiss on the first date, it does not make you a [insert any of the many derogatory names for women who pursue sexual activity on their own terms, however much or little that is].
- Men should pay the check
While forgetting about this relationship rule might not be great for our bank accounts, it is great for our relationship. Originally, paying the bill was associated with power. Men paid, because women did not work, and therefore, men had the financial control in the relationship (as well as control in many other areas, too). But we are working, driven, and powerful women, who deserve partners that are equal to us. So why expect the man to pay the bill if you both equally wear the pants? He takes care of the margaritas, you get the guacamole, and you both split the cab fair home.
- The “Three Date Rule”
Let’s be real — it’s #yearofthewoman. So let’s just throw out any and all rules that imply that what you want to do with your body, and when you want to do it, is not up to you. Besides, whatever you do or don’t do on a first, second, or third date should not dictate whether or not you’re “wife material,” and if it does, then you should not be dating that person anyways. If the chemistry is there, make your own rules.
- Don’t introduce them to your friends and family until it’s serious
While it’s absolutely fine not to want to intermix potential love interests with your friends and family, if you do want to invite the potential love interest you’ve been talking to on Bumble out to drinks with your friends, or your mom’s in town and you run into the guy you’ve been casually dating, do not panic! We should be open about what we want and expect out of a relationship anyway, so introducing them to your family and friends should not be off-putting or confusing to them. Friends and families are big parts of our lives, so if you don’t want to separate them from a possible romantic partner, then don’t!
- Men and women can’t just be friends
Ah, the classic rule that When Harry Met Sally took a whole hour and a half to explore — just to end on BFFs, Harry and Sally, falling in love at the end. Yes, you root for them to get together since the famous diner scene, but that doesn’t mean that men and women, outside of rom coms, cannot just be friends. Gender equality means seeing the opposite gender as a whole person, and more than just what they can do for you. So shouldn’t that mean being able to have fun with them, enjoy their company, talk, and appreciate them, without anything sexual or romantic spurring between either of you?
- Wait for him to make the first move.
We’ve already established that it’s #yearofthewoman, and 2018 is way too late for us to still be keeping around these silly gender roles. Besides, making the first move might save you a lot of time and energy later on — for one, no more waiting by the phone for him to call (go ahead and slide into his DMs, already!), and if you meet someone that wouldn’t want to date a strong, independent woman who knows exactly what she wants, you don’t want to waste your time on them, anyways. (Cue Beyonce: “Boy, bye.”)
- Play “Hard to Get”
We hold this idea that whoever cares less in the relationship is the one who has the most power. But should love really be about power? The truth is that caring is not a bad thing, as we’ve believed it to be. It’s okay to care; we’re supposed to care about each other. So what does it matter if you “come on too strong” or “care more”? Be true to your feelings and what you want. Because when you find the person you really care about, who totally impresses you and who you know is going to respect you and could make you happy, you should not want to play hard to get — to quote our go-to When Harry Met Sally, you should “want forever to start as soon as possible.”