These days, it seems like people aren’t simply dating in the traditional sense. They’re either hanging out, hooking up, seeing someone, exclusive with someone, or seriously dating, among other nuanced relationship statuses.
But if the spectrum between single and committed keeps growing, how’s a person to know when things move beyond casual?
Luckily, results of a recent survey suggest that there’s a moment in relationships when most people believe things have gotten serious.
The survey, from U.K.-based relationship support organization Relate, found that 50% of its 6,000 respondents reported that a relationship is “serious” when partners share their problems with each other.
In fact, communicating about hardships beat out dating exclusively and even marriage for the top marker of serious commitment.
Sure, traditional milestones like marriage still seem to be important to people, but fortunately, it seems that labels don’t carry as much weight as the actual quality of relationships.
If you ever have doubts about where you stand in your relationship, try talking it out with your partner. As much as people fear The Talk, communicating about this issue could very well be what sets you on track for a healthy “serious” relationship.