7 Tips For Turning A Summer Fling Into A Relationship, According To An Expert

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The first few weeks of dating someone can be really exciting. Everything is new, you’re starting to learn more about each other, and for a while you’re in your own bubble of romance. However, once the honeymoon period starts to come to an end and it’s time to do the real things like meet family, friends, and have the "where is this going" conversation it can get awkward and stressful. However, it doesn’t have to be. Here are seven tips for making a summer fling permanent from a dating and relationship expert. If you’re not a fan of being vulnerable it might seem tempting to avoid having difficult relationship chats altogether but if you follow these tips it might not be too painful.

The experts at dating app, Match have predicted that July 7 will be the hottest day this summer for dating with a 20 percent increase in activity on their app in comparison to Valentine's Day. Dating through winter can be a little strenuous. There has to be a seriously good reason to drag yourself out into the cold for a date when it's baltic outside. However, if you have bagged yourself a summer fling and looking for a little more Match’s Chief Dating Expert Rachel DeAlto shares her tips with Bustle on how to approach the topic of a long term relationship.

1. Don’t Push It

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The easiest thing to do when you're enjoying someone's company is to get carried away. What starts as a lazy weekend brunch and wander around the park can end with you planning your wedding in your head on the bus home. Expert Rachel DeAlto suggests that if you want the relationship to flourish you need to exercise a little bit of patience.

2. Well, Maybe Push It A Little Bit

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Being patient is important but you don’t want things to go stagnant. Introducing your crush to your friends can be a low-key way to signal you're interested in making things more serious.

When it comes to bringing your friends and new SO together DeAlto says it doesn’t need to be stressful. She says, “play it cool. Don’t add a title that hasn’t been pre-approved, in fact, don’t add a title at all. If your crush comes with you to a summer party, just introduce them by their name.”

3. Set Boundaries

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Putting labels on your relationship can feel incredibly final but it'll protect you in the long term. If your relationship is purely casual then leave it at that. Your partner should respect you and you don’t need to be at their beck and call. However, if it has the potential for something more DeAlto says to look out for, “are they making plans with you for the autumn? Have they incorporated you into their life? Have you met their friends or family? Do you have actual getting to know you conversations vs superficial conversations and sex?"

4. Keep It Light On Social Media

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The most tempting thing to do after you've been seeing someone for a while is to scroll back to the beginning of their Instagram and have a snoop. At best you're going to see the questionable choice of haircut they had in 2013 and at worst you'll find their ex. DeAlto suggests that a like here and there won’t hurt but your relationship doesn’t need to be all over social media.

She says scouring your crushes social media isn’t a good idea, explaining “many people don’t even realise, remember, nor care that they have pictures with exes on their social media. Seeing your crush snuggled up with an ex is an image that many have a hard time erasing from their mind.”

5. Get Real

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When you first start seeing someone you want to come across as impressive as possible. Talking about your high points at work and leaving out the fact that you got drunk at your niece's christening on a first date is understandable. However, after a while you'll need to open up a little bit.

DeAlto says if you start talking more and acting less it may encourage your date to do the same. Sharing your history and your goals is a great way to bond and will help you learn if you have a future together.

6. Talk About It

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If you've tried to get real and the "define the relationship" chat still hasn’t come up then you may just have to ask. This sounds scary and you might not like what you hear but at least you'll know for sure. DeAlto explains, “ if you’re in a fling and want more, I suggest easing into it and reading the signs before asking them to define the relationship. Ask them about coming with you to an event. Ask if you should invite their friends or family to an upcoming plan. Tell them how much you like them and enjoy spending time together.”

Being open and honest is all you can do. You also need to make sure you listen what they're telling you. DeAlto says, “See how they respond. If they are amenable, you’re on the right path to a natural transition into something real.”

7. Be Honest With Yourself

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While summer loves are super exciting, not everything is meant for long term success. The key thing to remember is that you are worthy of love. If you don’t feel the relationship going anywhere or they don’t make you feel like the queen you are it’s fine to cut things off. DeAlto says, “before getting into a relationship, make sure you’re ready. Give yourself time to get over your ex, make sure you are seeking a relationship because you think it would be a great compliment and not to complete you, and always do things that increase your self love and confidence—the true key to having a healthy relationship.”

I don't know whether it is the longer days or sunny weather but everything feels a little bit more hopeful in summer. If you're embarking on a new relationship and aren't sure how to take it to the next level being open, honest, and true to your partner and yourself is the best way to start a conversation about the future.