If you have ever found yourself with a guy who is taking his time before putting labels on what you have with him, you’ll relate well with all the forms of awkwardness, discomfort and fear that’s associated with such dilemma.

For women who are unfamiliar with this really uncomfortable situation, what happens is that you are put in a position where you are forced to demand an explanation from a guy you have been hanging out, doing stuff with and spending quite a lot of time with. For most women, this need arises when there’s been quite a long time between when they met the guy and the present moment in question.

The mistake many make is to presume that women who ask guys to declare their intent and to put a label on what’s happening are desperate. There’s no such thing as ‘desperate’ if a babe demands answers from a guy with whom she has increasingly been going on dates, spending time, calling, face-timing and basically just doing everything people in relationships do. It is the right question to ask, the right thing to do, whether you are only 19 or already marching fast towards the dreaded 30.

There’s no such thing as ‘desperate’ if a babe demands answers from a guy with whom she has increasingly been going on dates, [Credit - Stocky AI]
There’s no such thing as ‘desperate’ if a babe demands answers from a guy with whom she has increasingly been going on dates, [Credit - Stocky AI]

Many women also fear that the guy may leave if they ask this question. Some think that asking would unravel some truths they may not be glad to hear.

Of course, ignorance of his intention could be the blanket under which you wrap yourself and continue derive the pleasure of his attention, but doing this, continuously silencing the need for this much-needed clarity, is basically a way of shortchanging yourself, denying yourself of an essential truth that you need if you are going to end up happy or bitter.

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Refusing to ask will only increase the time you spend in a limbo, not knowing where you are headed with him, not knowing if you are investing your emotions in the right place. It is better to discover that what he needs is not what you are willing to offer, or that what he's offering is not what you need at that phase of your life, and break it up before it becomes more of a problem than it has to be.

For some guys, asking the 'what are we' question is what propels them into voicing their desire to be with you. Asking could be the propellant he needs to actually let it out. Some will say if you have to ask a man 'what are we' before he declares his interest, he doesn't really like you or that his interest may not be genuine. But that's not true. Some guys are just shy and need a little prodding along.

Note that an alternative to asking a man to put a label on what you have going with him would be to just shoot your shot directly.

If you are the type of babe who rolls that way, you could just say it directly that you want him to be your boyfriend instead of asking him the ‘what are we’ question.

Regardless of how long you want to wait to ask, just make sure you do [Credit - Shutterstock]
Regardless of how long you want to wait to ask, just make sure you do [Credit - Shutterstock]

It is advisable to allow a reasonable amount of time - 3 months doesn’t sound bad – before popping the ‘what are we question’. Some have been known to ask earlier or later depending on how frenzied the connection got with the guy.

Regardless of the timing you prefer, however, just ensure to ask.

Even if you are cool with enjoying a non-conventional relationship like friendship-with-benefits, there’s still a need to spell it out. There’s a need for you to hear it from him, a need for you to express it to him. Without this conversation, too much is left unsaid between you, and this is what precedes unmet expectations and a lot of bitterness between some men and women.

You always need to know what’s up. This is what sets the tone for the ‘relationship’, it is on this knowledge, this agreement, that all the things you do with that man sits and by shying away from asking, you are doing yourself a lot of disservice.