You have been dating for a while and now are finding yourself at the point in your relationship where you are wondering if he will make a commitment to you. Is he commitment-material? For once in you life you want to use your head (not heart) and make the right decision. You want to make a choice of either continuing your partnership or walking away. How can you know if he will commit to you?
Luckily for us there are ways to figure out if he will commit to you before you become too deeply involved.
Start by delving into his history. Your goal is to figure out if he has a history of being stable, responsible and acting with integrity. Does he set goals for himself, stick with it and actually reach it? Does he plan for the future? Is there a clear behavior pattern of committing to various aspects of his life?
Here are some questions you can ask and warning signs you can look out for.
Take your time, be subtle, discreet and weave your questions casually into your everyday conversations – don’t overwhelm or scare the poor man away!
Where do you live?
How long have you being living there?
What is the longest time you have ever lived in one place?
How do you get on with your neighbors/landlord?
Is he house-proud?
If he has been drifting from place to place, having trouble getting on with his neighbors, always renting never buying, you can deduce that this man won’t be hasty to put down roots with you.
You need to look out for a negative, repeated pattern of behavior. Ask yourself what a responsible person’s living situations will be like, and then compare it with what you are seeing now.
Don’t be silly and try to convince yourself that you will be the one that will change him and transform him magically into something he is obviously not. You are not his mother, cleaner or psychologist.
How long did your previous relationship last?
How did it end? Did you part on friendly/civil terms?
How long did your longest relationship last?
Does he have friendships that lasted for many years?
Does he actively maintain those relationships?
Does he have pets? Or plants?
Does he maintain family relationships?
His answers to the above questions will give you an indication if he is able and willing to maintain a long term relationship. If he is clearly unable to maintain a relationship for more that 3 months, can’t manage to keep a plant alive for longer than a week or his pets are sad-looking and neglected, you have your answer. A past scattered with broken hearts and angry lovers is the alarm bell telling you to move on.
He is a keeper if you can see a consistent pattern of well maintained relationships with romantic partners, friends and even pets and plants.
Is he part of a very close knit group of friends?
Are all his after-hours activities connected with his friendships?
Does he have a separate identity from his friends?
Does he always talk about “we” and not “I”?
Although having friendships is normal and healthy take note whether he is part of a very tight group who spend all their free time within the group context. If that is the case he is already getting all his companionship and emotional needs met by his circle – there will be no real space for you unless you are prepared to become part of the we-experience and not the us-experience.
You need to look out for someone that has a handful (or less) close friends, who has a life and identity that is separate from his friendships and who has space and need for a quality connection. He must have a need and space for you in this life!
How many of your friends are married?
Are they happy being married?
Were your parent’s union happy?
We are influenced by those around us, and tend to mix with people that live, act and think the same way as we do. The same thinking can be linked to commitment. If most of the people in his close circle are in long term, committed relationships and he is comfortable with that, he will want the same for himself. Chances are that being surrounded with his friends will act as a gentle form of pressure on him to commit to somebody.