When Did The Word ‘Commitment’ Start Feeling Taboo?

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Let me start by saying this is not a man bashing article. My current bio on my Bumble dating app actually states, “I can’t give much as right now I’m busy with my career, and can only see someone one to two times a week.” This is not a ploy or a game, it is actually the truth, and a common one between both men and women alike. In fact, a recent Bumble date responded to this bio saying, “Finally, someone who gets it.”

I will say a lot of men I have encountered say that women they come across on dating apps more often than not have a bio that states they are looking for someone; well, they won’t dare say a relationship but will elude to wanting more than a hookup. I am here to say that so do men. In fact, more men than not seem to be looking for something of substance, I find. So if there are so many people looking for that special someone, what’s the disconnect?

Even when I was looking for a commitment, I wasn’t ever bold enough to say exactly that. I would frame it more playfully like, “I’m looking for the salt to my avocado…the Derek to my Meredith,” you know, something cute and less “intense.” Why does saying that I want a committed relationship feel so difficult? I mean, after all, it was the truth. 

Sometimes, in dating scenarios and conversations, I would often lie, saying I didn’t want a boyfriend. Then I would go and describe what I did want, which sounded exactly like the description of a boyfriend. It’s almost comical how contradictory I sounded, and I knew it. But why was it easier to do that than to say the word “commitment”?

I once dated a guy casually, on and off for some time. He was the kind of being noncommittal. In fact, he claimed his whole dating philosophy on not settling down. But I found that he would always gravitate to seeing one person mainly at a time. Sure, he might have always kept one foot out the door, but he definitely seemed to focus on one woman at a time. I would find in the future, many other times that he would contradict himself. He would never claim to want a girlfriend, but a girl that he would be seeing would always look like something close enough to it.

There are pros to this sort of evasive dating world we live in, and it is that you have less of a chance ending up with someone just because of paralleled wants and circumstances, and more so because of a genuine connection. The downside is, it can end up being a power struggle. Either way, things have just gotten weird, and it seems like both men and women are terrified of being bold enough to say that what they are looking for is love.

So my question is, why is this terrifying to say? It’s a perfectly normal thing to want. But for some reason when I say it, I feel like it automatically puts pressure on someone. I also feel pressured when a guy says it to me. How did we become a generation that runs from commitment, when that’s what most of us really want? TC mark

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