dating, relationships, love and sex, me to we, the indie chicks

Dating 411: The Transition from ‘Me’ to ‘We’

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Diane Pauley

Diane Pauley is the PostGrad Coach.Always a lover people, she finally learned how to harness her art and do it for a living. She is now on a mission to help other millennials do the same -- build up their art and be their own boss full-time -- at PostGradolescence.com.

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I love you…but I love me more.” Besides doing Sex & the City trivia, how many times have you used that line in real life? It’s what happens when someone, other than Samantha Jones, realizes that she’s gotten herself in way too deep. It’s when it suddenly dawns on you that you’ve gotten yourself into a relationship that you’re not ready to commit to because you haven’t finished getting to know yourself quite yet.

First, let’s rewind and go over an important ‘must’ before you get too overwhelmed. Your first, real ‘from death do us part’ relationship is the one with ‘I.’

With this dynamic, your basic lingo revolves around terms like ‘me time,’ ‘my day,’ or anything that pertains to singular terms only. This self-concerned nature makes meeting a potential someone more complicated because your verbiage is going to be altered. It must be.

Now, let’s go over a few phases we all gradually go through in relationships. Bringing them to your attention will hopefully prepare you for the bumpy transition from ‘me’ to ‘we.’  Don’t worry. I’ll try to make the ride as smooth as possible.

Talking Phase

This could take anywhere from 2 days to 4 months, depending on one’s personality and sexual frustration. At this point, you’re so comfortable with ‘I’ and ‘my’ that it’s almost as if this new person is invading ‘your’ space.  Yet you want them there, which means you must learn how to cope and compromise…slightly. You’re nowhere near the ‘Carrie/Aidan’ move-in stage, so hang on to your heels and don’t go fleeing for Starbucks just yet!

Chilling Phase (Note: Pants Are Still On)

Again, this phase may last anywhere between days to weeks to months, provided we control our insatiable yet perfectly natural sex drives. Ladies, I know you have some patience in those groin muscles! Remember, he’s more than a center-fold, and you want to get to know him for his other attributes. This is the time where you bring out the whip & crack open your mental list: humor (Check.), chivalry (Check.), familia-closeness (Check.), intelligence with humility (Eh, one sec. Okay, check.) These are the ingredients that take us to phase three.

Let’s ‘Dance’ Phase

OK, you’ve waited long enough. I’m sure you’re relieved. Minor strip-teases are thus allowed in Phase 3. But more importantly,  you’ve unknowingly become comfortable with him hanging around you and your girlfriends. He’s made a good enough impression with you (and them) to have lasted this long and your singular verbiage is starting to wane.

Jumping Ship (You’ve Gone Overboard!)

Head over heels, perhaps? Oh my, the butterflies are fluttering like crazy and you are teeter-tottering on sanity because you’ve fallen hard for this potential ‘someone.’ But the real throat-tightening clincher is going to come the first time you say ‘we.’ You know it, it’s almost as monumental as ‘I love you,’ but when you go from ‘I use my oven to hold my magazines’ to ‘We love to host dinner parties,’ you know something has shifted on the inside of you and now it’s time for the magic to happen.

Make sense?  When you are aware of the process that ensues when you go from singlehood to mingle-hood, you’re that much more prepared for the transition.  I’m talking about the transition that takes place internally when you mentally, spiritually and emotionally shift your independent language to one of co-dependence.  It takes some time to get used to but if he’s worth it, you’ll know, and it’ll be smooth sailing.  Bon voyage chicas!

Are you working on the ‘I’ or ‘We’ right now?

Image Credit: Shutterstock

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  • Jewels

    I love this article, Diane. I used to jump straight from ‘me’ to ‘we’ without even blinking. Now I’m pretty sure it would be a much slower transition. I’m so busy, so dedicated to the life I am leading right now, that making time for a man and committing to a ‘we’ seems nearly impossible. I do have anxiety about whether or not I could even do it if I wanted to. This article helped though. It’s not about losing yourself in somebody else, it’s just allowing somebody else into your already established life plan. That idea helps me breathe a bit about the whole thing. ;)

  • http://theindiechicks.com/ Chiara Mazzucco

    Would you believe me if I said I’m still hanging on to the ‘me’ relationship? I actually STILL, married and mother, have trouble going from me to we. Some people experience the opposite problem, jumping to we and forgetting the me. I think at the end of the day, it’s a constant, never ending process. Every day that passes we deal with being ‘we’ and being ‘me’s’ … You gotta keep communicating through it all!

    • http://theindiechicks.com/ Chiara Mazzucco

      PS – So happy you finally got something up on our site, Diane!

  • http://postgradolescence.com/ Diane Pauley

    Love it Jewels & Chiara!! I’m fascinated on the difference in both of your responses, but to each her own. I know I’ve experienced both stages of this ‘who am I’ right now syndrome & there’s always a teeter-tottering motion between the ‘me’ & the ‘we.’ I agree that a slow transition and communication are great ways to keep in check.
    PS – Thx Chiara – I’m thrilled to have a post up too! All thx to Jewels:)