What Is the Etiquette for Multiple Casual Dating?

Stay focused on your date, even if you are just dating casually.Stay focused on your date, even if you are just dating casually.

Dating takes many forms, beginning with sometimes awkward first dates and evolving into long-term relationships. While many people date to find a partner and build a committed relationship, others might choose to casually date several people at once. Even if you are simply looking to meet new people and enjoy relaxed dates, you should still follow basic rules of dating etiquette. Proper etiquette will impress your dates and perhaps lead to something more serious.

Be Honest

Your date does not want to hear about your dating history, but she does deserve to know what you're looking for. For example, if she's dating to find a long-term partner and you're casually dating and not interested in a relationship, then she needs to know. Seek out compatible dates who are interested in casual dating. If you're both on the same page, your dates will be more enjoyable.

Focus on Your Date

Even if you're dating several men at once, you should give your date the same attention you would give a long-term boyfriend. Engage him in conversation, and ask him questions. Avoid talking about the other men you're seeing; instead, get to know your date. Share information about yourself, and choose activities that the two of you would enjoy doing together. For example, if you share a common love of the outdoors, find a local hiking trail for a unique date idea.

Manage Your Schedule

Do not schedule dates on the same day. You don't want to be rushing through one date to get to the next. Set aside enough time for a casual, enjoyable date with each person you're seeing.

Know When to End It

Often, casual dating can lead to a more serious relationship. If you have found the person you want to date exclusively, then end your relationships with the others. Don't hesitate to move that relationship forward because of your ties to the other women. Let them down gently and politely, and look ahead to beginning your new relationship.

Other Considerations

Follow proper rules of dating even when you're dating casually. Whoever schedules the date should pick up the bill, according to The Emily Post Institute. When your date arrives to meet you, stand to greet him, and give him a handshake or hug. Gender-neutral date etiquette includes holding the door for the person behind you and helping someone put her coat on if she needs it, according to The Emily Post Institute.

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About the Author

Barbie Carpenter worked as a technical writer and editor in the defense industry for six years. She also served as a newspaper feature page editor and nationally syndicated columnist for the Hearst Corp. Carpenter holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism from the University of Florida and a graduate certificate in professional writing from the University of Central Florida.

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