By LUCY CLEEVE
Congratulations! You’ve gone and got yourself a lady friend. So now that you’ve got her, how are you going to keep her? As many of you are already (painfully) aware, it’s not as simple as it sometimes looks. It’s very easy to freak out a new girlfriend. She’s treading carefully, making baby steps with you just to make sure she’s not falling in love with an axe murderer, or worse, a boring weirdo. Here is our guide on what to do and what not to do in a new relationship.
1. Be the nice guy
Don’t be thinking that acting cool, aloof and a little hard to get will make her more interested. She’ll be moving onto the next fool before you can say “I’m busy on Saturday”. You like her, so let her know. Don’t wait more than a day before texting back. You won’t seem too keen, we promise. Don’t forget to ask her lots of questions. You may not realise it’s happening but you’ll be judged and regularly tested on this. Remember her sibling’s name, exactly what she does at work, her hometown and how she likes her tea.
2. Secrets and lies
Don’t lie when she asks you a question. Masterfully avoid it, by all means – but don’t lie. She’ll find out eventually – and women remember everything. Everything. Don’t feel the need to discuss your exes at length, even if she asks. She may be curious; that’s cool, but don’t follow the bait. Likewise, don’t ask her about hers… you don’t want to know, really.
3. Dream on dreamer
Maybe you’re gone. Head over high heels and thinking this chick will be warming your heart and bed for the rest of your life. Well, that’s great. Maybe you’re right, but please don’t discuss these things with her just yet. She doesn’t need to know that you’ve always dreamed of a barefoot beach wedding and that you’re dead keen on calling your first-born Ronaldo (or Ronalda). Save these precious gems until you’re absolutely both on the same page.
4. Give her space, cowboy
Don’t message her 32 times a day and don’t try to make plans more than three months in advance. She’ll be outta there. Also, don’t book her in more than three times a week. This is important in a couple of ways. Firstly, you’ll freak her out with your neediness. Secondly, you both need time to see your mates. She needs to discuss every aspect of you A LOT with her friends to make sure you’re the right guy. Just understand this and let it happen.
5. Let’s talk about sex
Yes, it’s amazing at the start of a relationship. It is. But just because you’re both crazy hornbags right now doesn’t mean this will last forever. So enjoy. But don’t be fooled into thinking that your current sex god status gives you free rein to suddenly introduce previously unintroduced “games” or toys to the situation. Hold your weird sex cards close and you’ll have a killer hand to play later, when things start to dull.
6. Consider your presence and your presents
Don’t go overboard with the gift-giving. “But women love gifts!” you’re shouting, and it’s true, they do. But consider wisely. Showering her with gifts will make her feel she has to return the favour and you’ll only stress her out. Plus, you’ll peak too early and where will that leave you when she’s actually expecting stuff? By all means offer up a book you love or tickets to something great, but draw the line at anything sparkly. That’s unless you’re Donald Trump or Prince Harry. In that case, carry on.
7. For your bride you must groom
You may have been living in a funk of singledom, with a floordrobe of dirty socks and pizza boxes, but it’s time to clean up your act. While you may plan to slip back into this trampy, smelly lifestyle at around six months in, right now it’s just not cool. Make an effort when you’re meeting her. No need for any manscaping or experimentation with man bags but a proper shave and a clean shirt are very good starting points.
8. Watch your words
Don’t say “I love you” until you’re pretty (definitely) certain you’ll get the same response. There is no worse passion killer than an, “ohh, that’s nice” response to the first time you utter those three little words. Don’t introduce her as your girlfriend too quickly, either. Simply introduce her as, I don’t know, her name? Don’t get all emotional on her too quickly. She’s not your therapist or your mum.
9. No farting just yet
Don’t get too comfortable too quickly. Yes, she knows you fart (she does too, shockingly) but she doesn’t need to hear (or smell) them for the first few months. Don’t leave too much stuff at her place at this delicate stage either. We get it, it’s annoying lugging your stuff over there all the time but if she wakes up to your dirty gym kit in the corner and your toothbrush all snug in her bathroom you may not be comfortable for long.
10. Counting the days
Don’t ever use terms such as “our two-week anniversary”. Honestly? You sound like a girl.
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