Ladies and Gents, what is it about a title that turns a relationship up-side-down and inside-out? We’ve all had that relationship that started off so nicely, and everything seemed effortless until … you slapped a title on the otherwise ambiguous whatevership. But why is this so? Is it the general idea that with a title comes responsibility or a heightened sense of obligation? For whatever reason, relationships seem to get overly complicated when couple status has been officially solidified or a ring has been presented or a marriage is underway. But why? Why does a title come with such pressures and why does it change a good thing to bad … quickly!? Men would argue that women take the title of “girlfriend” too seriously and suddenly, she’s needy. Women would say men don’t take the title seriously enough. Where is the line in the sand or happy medium? Bossip asked a group of people: what is it about a title that turns a relationship up-side-down and inside-out?
Titles mean you have to live up to the implicit obligations, which could be spoken or unspoken, you just never know until something dramatic hits the fan! Where as a good deed would be just a bonus in a non-title situation. When the relationship is defined, that stuff can just be taken for granted instead of instantaneous appreciation. I think that if a couple decides to make things official, they should communicate and let it be known what they both expect. That way, you can’t be held accountable for something you haven’t been informed of, you know? Ultimately, it all boils down to communication and expectation. But to be safe, I say let it ride until it runs its course and if you both agree you want more, then go for it. -Janet, 32, Entrepreneur
With titles, people feel as though they have more responsibilities to give to the relationship. Most people steer away from the “exclusive” title because one party seems to switch everything up and becomes overly emotional. Two words: F*CK TITLES….the relationship was fine before the title. If anything, it only serves as validation which further shows the nothingness and lack of self worth that they have in their own lives. -Sheldon, Computer Tech, 28
Hm. See I’m one of those people who thinks putting a label on the relationship makes things work a little better. If I’m going to be someone’s “girlfriend,” then, naturally, there are perks and when you propose, there’s greater perks and so on with marriage. I think that a lot of girls get so caught up on keeping a man, they give up all the goods! You have to ration and let the man know that you’re not going to get all the perks a husband would get from a wife without a commitment. Men like a chase, so don’t let his a*s spend days at your house, he’s got to go! You don’t have an all access pass into my world until I know you’re serious. I think that’s a mistake a lot of woman make. But if you decide on your boundaries and know what you want, it’ll be easier to decipher who’s in for the long haul and who’s not. – Stacy, 29, Lawyer
I think with titles comes obligations and natural acts go out the window which leaves people to walking on egg shells. Because without them, people would be at ease because they wouldn’t feel pressured to be a certain way or act differently. I don’t know why, but titles change things. Sometimes for the good and other times for the bad. But I guess you both have to be on the same page and take your “titles” with equal importance in order for it to work. – Charmaine, Writer, 27
I think titles complicate things, honestly. But why is someone even worthy of all the benefits in a marriage if neither party is willing to commit? I think it degrades the institution of marriage. I’ve shacked up twice and it got me nowhere closer to marriage! Like my dad always said, “why buy the milk if you’ve got the cow?” And it’s true especially for women. When I met my husband, I made a point not to create a situation where he felt like I would be that girl who would let him move in or share financial responsibilities and it worked better than any other situation I had been in. So for women I would say, don’t settle and if he’s a stand-up kind of guy then he’ll respect you enough to do what it takes to do things right. – Toi, 33, Real Estate