The truth about ca­sual dat­ing

Hindustan Times (Patna) - Live - - Lifestyle - Collin Ro­drigues collin.ro­drigues@hin­dus­tan­times.com

In the chang­ing dy­nam­ics of re­la­tion­ships, it won’t be wrong to say that the def­i­ni­tions of love, in­ti­macy and dat­ing have as­sumed var­ied con­no­ta­tions.

An off­spring of this is ‘ca­sual dat­ing’, where peo­ple get to­gether, but main­tain a no-strings-at­tached sta­tus. In fact, of late Bol­ly­wood films have been por­tray­ing this con­cept quite reg­u­larly on the big screen. Even off screen, such re­la­tion­ships are gain­ing pop­u­lar­ity. “Peo­ple in ca­sual re­la­tion­ships don’t carry any emo­tional bag­gage. Longterm com­mit­ment isn’t the fo­cus of such as­so­ci­a­tions,” says re­la­tion­ship coun­sel­lor Neeta V Shetty.

Ex­plain­ing why more and more peo­ple are choos­ing such part­ner­ships, she adds, “One rea­son could be that th­ese days, peo­ple find it dif­fi­cult to sus­tain se­ri­ous re­la­tion­ships, where they need to com­mit to some­one emo­tion­ally for long. Oth­ers feel that their part­ner is en­croach­ing upon their per­sonal space too soon. So ca­sual dat­ing is an easy way to find com­pan­ion­ship and phys­i­cal in­ti­macy.”

Re­la­tion­ship coun­sel­lor Kin­jal Pandya adds that so­cial me­dia, and a rise in dig­i­tal plat­forms, have aided the con­cept of ca­sual dat­ing in a big way. “Nowa­days, with so­cial me­dia be­ing in vogue, and chat­ting on­line or on apps be­com­ing so easy, you don’t have to hold on to your

emo­tions,” she says.

Ice breaker?

And though most are of the opin­ion that such re­la­tion­ships do not last for long, in some cases such part­ner­ships act as the first step to­wards a last­ing re­la­tion­ship, and ul­ti­mately mar­riage. “Mar­riage is a pos­si­bil­ity only if your dat­ing part­ner’s wave­length matches yours. If the com­pat­i­bil­ity gets stronger, peo­ple start think­ing whether they should get se­ri­ous,” says re­la­tion­ship ex­pert Vishnu Modi.

Good or bad

Even though it does not en­tail a se­ri­ous com­mit­ment, ca­sual dat­ing comes with its own set of is­sues, es­pe­cially if expectations seep in. Modi ex­plains, say­ing, “Things can go wrong when you start tak­ing ev­ery­thing se­ri­ously and expectations in­crease.” For ex­am­ple, if your part­ner didn’t take your call ini­tially, you might be in­dif­fer­ent to it, but if you get a lit­tle se­ri­ous about your part­ner, th­ese small things may be­come both­er­some in the long run.

How­ever, though most peo­ple might not have a great opin­ion about ca­sual dat­ing –– apart from open­ing your mind to a new av­enue of dat­ing in gen­eral –– it can also have some ben­e­fits. Pandya adds, “Of­ten it helps when you meet a per­son with­out any pre­fixed no­tions. You can also get to know some­one with­out any con­di­tions or set expectations, and the same goes for your part­ner.

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