When you’re in your mid- to late-20s and in a serious relationship, everyone assumes (including you) the person you’re dating could very well be “the one.”
Should marriage be a route you wish you pursue, you’re at the appropriate time in your life to be making that decision.
Further, if marriage is what you want, it is a complete waste of time to date anyone you wouldn’t actually consider marrying.
That being said, it is safe to assume the person you're dating could be the one.
However, it is dangerous to assume the person you’re dating is the one, and here is why:
Pressure, pressure, pressure
Sure, you love your significant other and obviously would be delighted to spend the rest of your life with him, but take a step back to think about the pressure you put on yourself and your relationship when you apply that label.
Those two little words add about six tons of pressure, and they skyrocket your relationship to a much more serious place.
Are you ready to commit to “till death do us part,” even if you don't have a ring on your finger yet?
Escalation to commitment
Perhaps, the worst and biggest consequence of this label is your internal escalation to commitment.
Now that you’ve applied the label, your mind is stuck on this relationship being your “forever.”
Most of us are stubborn as all hell, so we will move mountains and put up with a lot of BS just to prove we’re right.
So, if your relationship really isn’t all that great, you’ll refuse to see it.
You ignore red flags
When you don't have the pressures and commitment of “forever” flashing through your mind, you are able to see your partner unbiasedly.
Nobody's perfect, so there’s bound to be a thing or two about your significant other that bugs you.
Some of those seemingly “little” things could actually signify much bigger red flags.
If you are set on your significant other being “the one,” you don’t want to surrender your view of your future.
So, you sweep these red flags neatly under the rug.
You start to change who you are
If you say someone is “the one” and he isn’t, you start to change who you are to make the relationship work.
You’ll watch movies you don't like, pick up a hobby you literally can’t stand and start to adjust your interests for the sake of the relationship.
Worst of all, your relationships will likely change. Your friend whom your significant other cannot stand (but who is one of your favorites) will most likely fade out of your life in hopes to not “rock the boat.”
You set an expectation you're not ready for
When you say out loud, “I think they’re the one,” you set that expectation for everyone else.
So, if you start to doubt your relationship, you have the added stress that “everyone else” thinks you’re supposed to marry that person, too.
You’ll be less likely to walk away if you know everyone else will want some kind of explanation of what happened.
It makes you want to rush to engagement
When you decide someone is the one, you’re putting a ticking clock in the back of your head.
Every special dinner out, or holiday, you are hoping and expecting that commitment. And, when those events pass with no such event, you become disappointed.
You drop not-so-subtle hints you want a ring, and you want it ASAP!
When you take a breather from this, you feel like you’re rushing a decision that is quite possibly the biggest decision of your life.
But, you hardly even want to admit this to yourself.
We love the optimism of saying someone is “the one” when you’re still sporting a title of the friend variety.
It's totally okay to say, and you very well (hopefully) could be right!
But, the concept of saying it before you have that official commitment is much like counting your chickens before they hatch: It can be dangerous for you and your relationship.
Most of all, it can force you to make a decision that could be wrong; one you would not otherwise make without the label.
So, tread carefully with this one, friends.
There is no reason to make that verbal commitment (even just to yourself) without being totally sure!