CHARLESTON, WV (WVNS) — Today, dating can be frustrating and complicated to say the least.

Everyone should try to have their own set of dating rules to help you see what you want and need in a relationship. Usually having your own set of rules can help push you towards getting into a healthy relationship.

The following are 11 rules that should help you find that relationship you are looking for!

Date multiple people at once

This will help you play the field and figure out what you want and need in a relationship. If you do not abide by this rule, there is a chance that you could end up really being into someone and they might not be into you, meaning you could get ghosted, end up pulling away, or that special someone might not be finding something serious.

Keep dates short

Keep dates short to about an hour and 30 minutes. This will help you to get to know the person, feel a spark, but not long enough that you will get carried away with the excitement of the potential. This will also keep you from being burnt out from dating, which can happen and mess with your mental health.

Be upfront about wanting a relationship

If that is what you want, you should be honest about it. There’s nothing to be gained by hiding the fact that you are looking for your forever person, but there’s a lot you can lose by it. Let go of the idea that it might make a potential partner uncomfortable or scare them away.

Avoid talking about exes on early dates

Talking about past relationships and breakups gets heavy fast, and the first few dates should be light and easy. It is a great way to learn about the person and connect on a deeper level, but there’s plenty of time to talk about that later, so hold off for the first handful of dates.

Pay more attention to follow-through than advanced planning

Some people may not want to accept a last minute date, or go by their own rules, but you should not write off someone based on how far (or not far) in advance they initiate a date. Some people are just not great planners, and life happens and can become hectic.

Don’t feel obligated to send a thank-you text

As long as you thanked your date warmly and sincerely in person before parting ways, there should be no reason to send a follow-up text. Doing so can put them in a position where they feel obligated to respond in a certain way and removes any healthy tension on their part of wondering if they did something right or wrong.

Give them two weeks to reach out again

Even after a great date, someone might need to figure out how compatible they think you two might be. You should not worry about texts and read into them so severely, as long as it’s within two weeks. That’s plenty of time for a person to have decided whether and when they want to see you again.

Wait at least a few dates to have sex

A dating rule that can really come in handy for sparing heartbreak is avoiding sexual intimacy until you know you’re both looking for the same thing. If it is just a sexual connection, that can be great, but if it’s something more, like an actual relationship, you want to make sure that it is the potential other’s too.

Don’t freak out about who pays

If you want to offer to cover or split the bill, I think anyone these days appreciates that, whether an offer is accepted or not. If they do let you, it may be a sign that they are just not into you, but try not to look too much into that, unless they tell you otherwise.

Feel free to do some of the planning yourself

It feels nice and relieving when someone else takes the reins on choosing a time and place for your date, but again, some people just aren’t great planners. If you have a certain idea in mind, throw it out there. Your potential partner will appreciate the effort and it takes pressure off of them, which can actually keep them from being tense or nervous.

Eat whatever you want

Eat what you want to eat. You don’t always have to go by those rules like eating a salad or not finishing your plate. If you’re hungry, by all means, eat as much as you need to feel satisfied. If you have leftovers, you want a partner who respects you for not wasting food. They may even even appreciate and respect how much you love a nice meal.

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