Ah, I remember the days when dating used to be simple. You were either dating or you weren't. OK, actually, that was a total lie. I have no recollection of that time because I'm only 24 years old, and throughout my lifetime, dating has been a total MESS. The biggest problem here is that nobody knows what anything means anymore! Even the term "dating" could mean casually going on dates to one person, while it means being in a relationship to another. And don't even get me STARTED on "hanging out." What does "hanging out" mean?!
To me, "hanging out" doesn't stand on it's own as a "label" for your relationship with someone. Hanging out is just something you do. I hang out with my boyfriend just like I hang out with my mom and my best friend. Sometimes, I even hang out with people I don't really like that much! Hanging out, to me, means literally nothing more than passing time with another human. But, apparently, to some people, "hanging out" is a relationship status. Unfortunately, despite it being a relationship status, lots of people still don't really know what that means. People are so confused by it that the question "Guys, what does it mean when you're "hanging out" with someone, in terms of dating?" was posed on a recent Reddit thread.
Check out the responses below to see how guys defined "hanging out":
It's a way to get out of dating.
You aren't dating if y'all just hanging out. If y'all were dating you would call it dating.
It's a loophole to get out of commitment.
Sounds like some non-committal splitting of hairs to me.
It means you have sex, but you don't date.
It means you spend time together and have sex but are not dating.
It pretty much just means you're not dating.
It means you're not dating.
It means you aren't exclusive.
It means she hasn't decided to be exclusive with me.
It means it's time for you and your partner to communicate.
It means whatever you and your partner want it to mean, and the only way to figure out what they want it to mean is to talk to them about it.
There's something holding this person back from dating you.
It means the guy is doing something with you, but not even sure he wants to admit to dating. Mostly used if the guy is worried it might get back to some other girl he likes more, or to guys that would disapprove of him dating the hang out girl.
It means you guys haven't had the "what are we?" talk yet.
You're seeing somebody but have not had any discussion about exclusivity, seriousness, etc.
It means... that you're an immature teen from the '90s?
It means you're a character in a 90s teen high school sitcom.
OK, there are two things I'd like to point out here. First and foremost, ALL OF THESE ANSWERS ARE DIFFERENT. What does this mean for humanity? Well, clearly it means we are all completely confused on what the heck "hanging out" actually means in terms of dating. So, if you and your partner decide you're just "hanging out," it might be worth it to take a second to discuss what exactly you mean by "hanging out" just to make sure you're both on the same page.
The last thing I want to point out? Despite the fact that these responses were all generally pretty different, there was one thing everyone could mostly agree on: Hanging out does NOT equal dating someone. So don't go mixing them up.
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