He’s still dating other people

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Dear Meredith,

Dating has not been easy for me. I'm sure many can relate. During this pandemic, I decided to give it a shot, because ... why not? I'm currently talking to this one guy and it's been pretty great. He treats me like I matter, which is something I haven't felt in a VERY long time.

We went to take a COVID test together as one of our dates. I must say it was pretty romantic. We have been talking for about a month and a half, but it feels longer. Our conversations and actions are just so natural, and our energy when we are together feels right. We both have the same feelings about important issues, which is a huge relief, and it makes him more attractive to me.

One night I decided to call him. Full disclosure, I was a bit tipsy. We talked for a few and then I asked if he was seeing/talking to other people. And he said yes. I must admit I was sad to hear that, because I am not. His reasons for still being active on the apps is that he wants to make sure what we have is real and if it will be substantial for a long-term relationship. I guess he wants to keep his options open? I expressed that I would have appreciated him sharing this information sooner, just so I would know what his intentions are.

Am I moving too fast? Should I be doing the same thing? I don't want to continue dating other people, but am I investing all my time in someone and a relationship that may not go anywhere? Will I later come to regret this? Am I putting all my eggs in one basket?

- Hopeless romantic

This is the first time I've heard of a COVID test first date. If anyone else has spent a date doing this, I'd love to know. I guess there can be a lot of bonding time as you wait for the swab.

As for your question(s), my first thought is that it's hard to balance multiple eggs and baskets right now. Because of COVID-19, we have to be very careful about who we see, how, and where. That's my big question about your relationship with this man. When you see him, is the assumption that you're in the same bubble? Are you seeing him outside? Is there kissing? Is he kissing others? Those are some good followup questions after that tipsy conversation. There's no reason to make massive decisions about a relationship after a month and a half, but you should know where you both stand on rules for safety.

There's also the emotional part of this. That's risky too. It'll become less scary, I think, if you talk to him about boundaries. If he has a bunch of dates with someone else, you'd want to know. If he stops dating other people, you'd also like to be told. Honestly, it's just about knowing how much to give and how open to be to others. You can let him know you're also figuring out whether this has long-term potential by evaluating the relationship as it goes. It's not like you're sure this is your endgame, right? It's still early.

You can continue to communicate with this man but call it what it is – the start of something. You ask, "Am I investing all my time in someone and a relationship may not go anywhere?" How much time are we talking about here? This relationship is new. Even if you're not seeing others, you should be reaching out to friends, community ... anything to remind yourself that he's not the center of your world ... yet.

– Meredith

Readers? What boundaries should be set here? Should this LW try to talk to others?