The DTR: When to Define the Relationship

I've been dating a man for about two months. His work schedule is extremely busy, so it's hard for us to get together often. Although we have not made a commitment to each other, I still want to ask him if he's dating other women. I feel I have the right to know, especially since it looks like we will soon be intimate. How can I ask this question without looking like I don't trust him? I am not seeing other men, but if I find out that he is seeing other women, I may want to. ‑-Erinn14


Sherry Amatenstein

Sherry is the author of The Q&A Dating Book and Love Lessons from Bad Breakups. She has taught dating seminars, appeared as an expert... Read more

Dear Erinn14:

The rule of thumb -- and other body parts -- is that anytime you're contemplating doing the bedroom boogie with a man you're dating, you are entitled to inquire if you're the sole woman in his life. After all, you must protect your sexual, as well as your emotional, health.

After two months, you may not have the right to demand he stop seeing other women, but you certainly deserve an answer to a casual query along the lines of, "Uh, do you see us as having the potential to one day become a 'real' couple?" Hopefully, he'll then open up about his romantic intentions -- or lack thereof. If he refuses to even discuss the subject, that's a silence that speaks volumes.

Don't worry about the trust issue. Asking for the first time whether your man is seeing other women has nothing to do with trust. Asking for the 15th time, however -- after he has sworn that you are his only woman -- is another matter.