Dating Advice - Are We Dating or Just Hanging Out : Cyber Dating Expert
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Dating Advice – Are We Dating or Just Hanging Out


Cyberdating Expert Julie Spira at BlogworldIn this week’s “Ask the Cyber-Dating Expert” post, we’re going to tackle the issue of the relationship status.

It’s getting very blurry these days to determine whether you’re actually dating someone, or just hanging out as friends.

A 25-year old college student told me that she’s never been more confused about dating in her life.

After chatting and texting with a guy she met online for several weeks, he sent her a text to say, “Hey, let’s hang out tonight.”

So, what does hanging out mean?

Hanging out could be several things.

1. He might have a party to go with and they’d be hanging out with a group of friends.

2. It’s his way of saying I’d like to have a date with you tonight.

3. He’d like to hook up for a casual fling.

4. He’s testing the waters, so keeping it cool to see if he likes you or not.

Whatever the intention means when someone says, let’s hang out, one thing is for sure, singles are confused about their relationship status with members of the opposite sex. Whether they’ve met while cyberdating or out-and-about, dating in groups has added to the confusion for many singles.

When I digged a bit more into her “relationship” with her texting beau, I found out he her took her out to dinner. He paid for dinner. He gave her a short kiss after dinner. He went back to texting with her for several weeks and then asked her to hang out again.

The Digital Dating Process

The digital dating process does include flirting via text to stay in touch, emails back-and-forth, and putting actual dates on the calendar.

The rise in popularity of group dating, where singles who like each other hang out in a group and go to an event together, makes most women unsure of where they stand in the relationship, or if they’re even in a relationship at all.

My response to her was, “Yes, you did go on a date.” She wasn’t sure if he was just being chivalrous and kind by paying for her dinner, but they didn’t go “Dutch” treat and he did ask her out again.

Is he her boyfriend? No. Just because he sends texts daily, doesn’t mean you’re status has been elevated to boyfriend or girlfriend. Chances are he’s playing the field, having fun, and doesn’t really want a steady girlfriend. More than likely, it’s a flirtationship, which is a common place in between friends and being in a relationship. He has an active online dating profile and she has an active online dating profile.

Read: How Do You Know if You’re in Flirtationship Mode?

If a man really wants to make you his girlfriend, he’ll let you know. He won’t want anyone to claim you as his and will make his intentions known.

Are you confused about your relationship status?

Julie Spira is an online dating expert and founder of She creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. For more dating advice, follow @JulieSpira on Twitter and sign up for the Weekly Flirt newsletter.

Need help with your dating life? Find out how our Irresistible Coaching programs can help you date better and find love online.


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8 Responses to “Dating Advice – Are We Dating or Just Hanging Out”

  1. Autumn on June 26th, 2016 11:26 am

    My best friend and I just admitted we have feelings for each other. We have discussed what would happen if we did have a relationship and that we’ll remain best friends. He asked me what this makes us. I don’t know how to respond. I was going to say that we are just “us.” No labels just yet. I’m shy when it comes to relationships and I don’t really like other people knowing because I feel judged. I don’t want to call him my boyfriend yet and we aren’t “dating”. Are we just seeing each other?

  2. Julie Spira on June 28th, 2016 7:46 am

    Hi Autumn,

    Some of the best relationship start as friends first, so you’re probably off to a good start.

    There’s no need for a label until you start dating officially. Then you’re
    “dating.” Once you decide to become exclusive, it’s fair to say you’re seeing each other. Eventually you might want to start calling him your boyfriend, but labels don’t matter as much as feelings.

    As long as you have continuity in your relationship and are both happy with the pace, keep open to the possibilities of where it will lead. There’s no need to change your Facebook relationship status to make a big announcement. At some point, one of you might want it to become more serious than the other or you may just say you want to go back to friends.

    I applaud you for admitting your true feelings and hope this relationship evolves into something that makes you both happy.

    Keep me posted!


  3. Chelsey on March 1st, 2017 7:12 pm

    I have been “hanging out” with this man for almost four months. I stay over, we text and call each othet everyday but he introduces me as his friend. When I ask if I’m his girlfriend he says not.

    When I tell him I’m confused and don’t casually date or have friends with benefits and want a relationship, he doesn’t respond. He says I should know and I tell him I really don’t know where he stands and it is starting to become frustrating. Am I being used?

  4. Julie Spira on March 21st, 2017 10:16 am

    Hi Chelsey,

    “Hanging out” is also considered by many has “hooking up.” If he won’t call you his girlfriend after four months, and he says you’re NOT his GF, believe him and find an available man who’d be proud to call you his girlfriend. There’s no confusion here. It sounds like FWB to me, so don’t be so available and find someone who will be proud to put that label on you.


  5. Morgan on April 2nd, 2018 5:51 pm

    I’ve been seeming this guy for a little over a year now. We agreed to start off as FWB however I’m not sure that’s still true. We are together 2-3 nights a week and every other weekend. I’ve been around his kids, he’s been around mine and we’ve even had our kids together. We went to school together and actually hooked up in school. We hadn’t seen each other in over 20 years when we reconnected. He doesn’t like putting labels on things, says once you do it ruins everything. He’s been hurt in the past a few times. He refers to me as his lady friend, which I’m not a fan of and I’ve told him that. I’m not sure exactly what we are but i feel like we are more then lady and guy friends. I know I’ve got feelings for him. What do you think? Do I keep just going with it to see what happens? He’s a great guy, we have lots of fun together. Does there have to be a label? Is it ok to be referred to as lady friend? What does that even mean?!

  6. Julie Spira on June 5th, 2018 7:21 am

    Hi Morgan,

    Thanks for sharing your story.

    If you agreed to start out as FWB and your feeling have grown more for your guy, it’s time to let him know you see him as your boyfriend, if that’s how you truly feel.

    Women get attached and bond with men after a long period of time, and one year is a long period of time.

    Does he date others? Is it an open relationship where you both can see others and sleep with others?

    You are spending a lot of time together, as if you’re in a full relationship, which can be confusing.

    Labels are much more important to a woman than they are to a man. He might be happy with the FWB definition, but it sounds like you’d like to have a more serious and defined relationship status.

    Ask him if he will be your boyfriend and if you can date exclusively, if that’s what you really want. If he doesn’t feel the same way and you’re looking for a serious relationship, it’s time to move up, or move on. Since he’s hesitant to give you the label you desire and deserve, waiting it out won’t make it magically happen, especially after one year together.

    Being called a lady friend, means you’re a friend, not a girlfriend. You signed up to being friends with benefits. If you can share a bed together, you should be able to share your heart and feelings together as well.

    Keep me posted on your progress.

    Wishing you much love and joy.


  7. Jillian on May 20th, 2019 4:30 am

    So I’ve talking to this guy for a month now. He’s been divorced for a year and been separated for 3 years. We both have been through a lot and he has mentioned he is “bent” but not “broken”. We have been on 4 dates and things I thought have been ok. Well about a week ago and actually after we made out heavily, he’s been pulling back big time. We haven’t had sexual intercourse and have been taking it SUPER slow. He doesn’t talk to me through the day like he used to. It’s like his personality dimmed and his words are shorter. I recently asked him when I was going to meet his 3 kids and his response was strong and stern. He said he wasn’t ready to share that side of him yet. Like I get it, considering I have a son myself and I wouldn’t want to introduce him to just anybody. I told him I understood and whenever he’s ready, just let me know. I need to know if I’m wasting my time and energy with this or if I’m setting myself up for another failure. I honestly can’t go through another toxic relationship or do these mind games. I just won’t do it again. Or I can NOT go through it again. My heart or emotional state can’t take another beating.

  8. Julie Spira on May 21st, 2019 6:17 pm

    Hi Jillian,

    It’s great that you met someone you like, but four dates in the course of one month doesn’t equate to a serious relationship, or even one where there’s a commitment to be exclusive.

    The guy you’ve been dating is newly single, and has the responsibility of being a single dad.

    Putting pressure on him will just push him away further. Guys tend to pull back when they’re on the verge of committing, or if they aren’t sure you’re the one they want to be with.

    For now, you need to go out and date other men, and be open to the possibility that you’ll meet an amazing available man who isn’t “bent.”

    Wishing you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may swipe or roam.


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