4 Dating Behaviors That Mean Someone's Ready For Marriage, According To Experts

Dating can be a lot of fun, especially when it's casual and you're just looking to have a good time. However, when you start looking for something more serious, or if you're looking for "the one" to settle down with, dating folks who aren't on the same page as you can be frustrating, because it can make you feel like you're wasting your time. This is why understanding someone's intentions by recognizing the dating behaviors that mean someone’s ready for marriage can save you a lot of time, energy, and heartbreak.

But are a person's intentions something you can really tell just from how they behave on a date? According to Susan Winter, a NYC relationship expert, love coach, and author of Breakup Triage: The Cure for Heartache, the answer is, surprisingly, yes. That's because, as she explains, there are some signs that can indicate that your date is likely on the same page as you if you're looking to settle down. The same is true of red flags that mean they aren't ready to settle down just yet. "When a person is finally ready for marriage, they approach dating far differently than those who're treading water," Winter tells Elite Daily. So, if you're ready to find someone to settle down with, these are the dating behaviors you might want to be on the lookout for.

1. They Are Focused On Getting To Know You.

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One of the clearest signs your date might be interested in something more serious, says Winter, is when they put in real effort to get to know you when you hang out. “You'll find this date intensely listening to everything you say, and actively asking questions. They truly want to get to know you," Winter tells Elite Daily.

2. They Are Dating With A Purpose.

When you’re on the date, ask yourself if it feels like they're fully present and have a purpose, says Winter — specifically a purpose that feels deeper than just taking you home for the night. “Your date isn't looking to fill their bed for the night, but rather, looking to fill their life with a partner. There is a conscious intention to get to know you on every date, and every conversation. Your date is serious in purpose, and it's evident,” says Winter.

3. They Are Reliable.

When you make plans with them, how confident are you that they'll follow through? If there's no doubt in your mind, Winter says there's a good chance this person is taking things seriously. “If your date says they're picking you up at 7 p.m., they're at your doorstep at 7 p.m.. Long gone are the days of last-minute excuses for breaking a date, or simply not showing up. This dater is accountable,” says Winter

4. They Say They're Ready To Settle Down.

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Has your date made it clear they're ready to get married? Winter says it’s very possible they mean it, provided their behavior is backing up their words. “They don't beat around the bush and aren't vague in terms of what they're looking for in a relationship. They'll state outright that they're looking for a life partner,” explains Winter.

While only time can tell how serious someone is about settling down, these behaviors are good signs the person you're dating might be looking for something real and long-term. As for what to avoid if you're ready for a serious commitment, Winter says to be wary of anyone who is inattentive on your date. “If your date is checking their phone, late showing up, distracted, or vague in their answers about what they're looking for, they're marking time. If they're serious about a relationship, their attention is fully on you. Signs to the contrary are evidence that a person is not ready, or interested in something serious,” she concludes. If that's what you observe, don't be afraid to say goodbye, and instead, find someone who will give you the kind of relationship you deserve.