To want commitment is only human.
Asking for commitment is asking to have someone make you important, to make you a priority, to care about you as more than a toy for them to play with, to consider your needs, your wants, and your desires.
Asking for commitment from someone is asking to matter to them.
Unfortunately, most of us have been made to feel wrong for asking for commitment. We've been told that doing so is "pressure" and that it will drive someone away. We've been taught to pretend that we don't really want commitment--to act like wasting our time is cool and no big deal.
Because of this, we behave inauthentically trying to be someone we're not and all the while slowly dying inside from heartbreak.
Fear of asking for commitment forces us to diminish ourselves in dating. We become less authentic and less powerful. We give people power over us and allow them to cross our boundaries. We allow people to take what they want without giving us anything in return.
And because we allow and even encourage this disrespect, we lose respect for ourselves also. We abandon ourselves to get someone to like us and the worst part is that they still don't like us the way we wish they would.
So is it too much to ask for commitment? Does it drive people away? And how do you approach this topic anyway?
In this post, we're going to answer these questions in a clear and powerful way so that you can empower yourself to ask for the commitment you crave and be honored in the way that you deserve.
Is asking for commitment too much?
The short answer: No.
One of the biggest misconceptions around commitment is that there should be none in the beginning, then one day you get it, and after that you have it.
That's not exactly the way it works.
Commitment is not a static thing that you get from someone and then you have it. Commitment is an evolutionary thing.
Commitment is something that should be there in the beginning and grow over time. Asking for commitment isn't so much about having "the talk" as it is about knowing what you expect at each stage in the relationship and when it's not happening naturally, you ask for it.
On a first date, commitment looks like showing up on time, being interested in you, making conversation, asking for a second date, and calling/texting afterward.
That is the appropriate level of commitment for a first date. Someone who shows less than that is showing less than the appropriate level of commitment.
3 months in, the appropriate level of commitment is knowing how they feel about you, knowing that they want a relationship between the two of you to work out, and being ready to make it exclusive to give the relationship an honest chance.
That's the appropriate level of commitment for 3 months and someone who demonstrates less than that is demonstrating less than the appropriate level.
When you know the level of commitment that you're looking for, you'll know if you're receiving it from this person or not. When you're not, that's the time to ask for it.
With the right person, each new level of commitment will tend to come naturally and you'll rarely have to ask for it, although you will have discussions about where your relationship is going. When you do need to ask for it, you will be well received.
If you're dating someone who completely avoids conversations about commitment and it's like pulling teeth to talk about it with them, that's a pretty obvious sign that this person is not ready to be committed. To continue investing in that relationship likely means heartache for you.
Does Asking for Commitment Drive People Away?
Sometimes, yes. But when it does, it's always for the best.
When two people are clearly into each other and have a real desire for a relationship, things tend to progress very naturally and conversations about commitment are generally pretty easy to have.
If you're in a position where you feel like you have to ask for commitment, that can really only mean a couple of things.
You haven't communicated about what you're looking for and where you want this relationship to go so you have no real idea about where you stand with each other.
You want something different from what they want and it's becoming more and more difficult to feel satisfied in the relationship.
In either instance asking for what you want can only help.
Maybe you both want the same things but haven't discussed it so you don't know how the other person feels. Talking about it will only bring you closer together, deepen your trust, and give you a more solid foundation to build on. You'll both feel safer and happier knowing that you feel the same way.
Maybe you want different things and you're afraid that if you bring it up you'll have to face up to that and potentially lose the relationship. You think that if you can keep them around longer, maybe they'll change their mind. Your plan is to play things cool until the time is right and then somehow get them to say they want a relationship too.
We've done this enough ourselves to know that it never works. People are who they are, not who you want them to be. Even if you can get them to say they want it but they really don't, they won't mean what they say and it will just hurt more later.
You never find Love through avoidance, you find Love through acceptance. Accept people for who they are and accept yourself for who you are--someone who desires true commitment.
Don't pretend to be ok with anything else and don't cling to someone who tries to give you something else. You can only drive away someone that you were never meant to be with in the first place.
How do you talk about commitment?
Asking for commitment is about knowing what you expect and speaking up when that doesn't happen naturally. When a relationship has potential, much of the commitment will come very naturally and there will be times when you'll need to ask for it.
For example, let's say you had an excellent first date with someone, you both seemed very interested and excited and you even kissed at the end of the night. As far as you can tell this was a really quality connection and you can't wait to see where this goes.
Perhaps at the end of the date, he (or she) says, "I'll call you tomorrow." You wait all day and never get the call.
The following morning they call and you're so excited to hear from them that you completely overlook the fact that they didn't call when they said they would. That would be a mistake. They didn't demonstrate an essential level of commitment--calling when they said they would.
If you didn't know that to be one of your expectations, you would probably overlook it as most people do, but since you've identified it, you can recognize how important it is to let someone know early on that you expect them to call when they say they will.
It might have been an honest mistake. You don't have to be angry about it but not addressing it is basically telling them, "It doesn't matter if you don't do what you say you're going to do. I don't care either way." And that's a horrible foundation to begin a relationship on.
In the kindest way possible you can say to them, "I'm really glad you called. I was concerned when you didn't call like you said you would. I don't want to make too big of a deal out of this but you need to know that if we continue seeing each other, I'm going to expect you to do what you say you'll do and if you can't do that, I'm going to quickly lose interest in this relationship."
Anyone worth your time will respect that boundary and anyone who doesn't isn't worth your time.
Commitment is essential to a healthy relationship. You need to know what you can count on from your partner. You need to know that they are reliable, trustworthy, and honorable. And you need to know that they respect and appreciate you. Commitment is the way they do that.
Non-commitment doesn't make someone a bad person, but it makes them a bad partner. If you're reading this post about commitment then you must crave commitment from your partner. That's completely human and you deserve to have it.
The next thing to do is to identify your expectations around commitment. What do you need to see from someone early on? A few months in? A year in? Beyond?
Create reasonable expectations that can affirm to you that you are on the right track with each other and let you know that you are honored and appreciated. Whenever someone isn't living up to that standard, simply ask them to. If they care about you, they'll make the effort.
This is something we focus on very closely with our clients as it's one of the most essential tools to consciously creating your ideal partnership. If you'd like our support in this, click here to schedule an introductory session.
You deserve to be Loved and appreciated. You deserve commitment.
Join us Thursday for a free Live Workshop where we'll be sharing the 3 Secrets to Consciously Create Your Epic Love Story. It'll be a powerful evening. We hope you'll join us!
As always, thanks for reading <3
Thank you so much for enjoying our content! Our greatest joy comes from knowing that people like you are using it to transform your lives and relationships and that the world is becoming a better place because of it.
We know the feeling of being alone, of struggling through what seems like an endless series of dead-end relationships, of waiting for the phone to ring, of being rejected and let down again and again.
We know what it's like to go to bed alone each night wondering if that will ever change and fearing that it might not.
We know these experiences all too well and that is why we do the work we do. We want you to know that you can find Love, that the application of these simple tools and practices can make a complete difference in every aspect of your Love life, ultimately leading you to the intimate, loving, lifetime partnership you so deeply crave.
You're not in this alone. We're here for you <3