From the first time you lock eyes across the room to the first “I love you”, our romantic lives are typified by glorious relationship milestones that we reach together. But how important are these dreamy moments to people nowadays, and do some hold more currency than others? And how about those awkward firsts that should be avoided at all costs?
Our latest survey set out to answer these questions (and much, much more). Here’s the skinny…
The romance of relationship milestones
In some sense, our lives are characterized by ‘firsts’. Things like the first words you spoke to the first time you went on vacation together are all memorable milestones for you and your loved ones. However, a lot of those significant moments happen when we’re in a relationship with someone. You always remember the first time you met someone special, your first date, the first time you kissed them, or the first time they said they loved you…
Because these events matter so much, EliteSingles decided to do some digging. Our dedicated research team asked 1,900 registered users* what they think about relationship milestones. The first question we asked our respondents was whether they think it’s romantic to celebrate romantic milestones with a partner. The good news is that an overwhelming majority – 94% – think it is.
We then asked whether romantic milestones suggest you’re in a serious relationship with someone. Much like the previous answer, 82% of those surveyed said they signify a meaningful bond, with just 18% suggesting they don’t. Indeed, the longer the time you spend together with someone special greatly increases the likelihood you’ll experience these milestones together.
Social media and relationship milestones
Fortunately, our members were also adamant that recognizing relationship milestones didn’t mark the end of romance. In fact, 84% of our participants suggested that these moments are a sign that you’re deeply in love with your partner (the other 16% reasoning that they can be unromantic).
And what about sharing romantic milestones via social media? According to our results, going public about milestones is a big no-no; 77% of those surveyed said milestones are private and shouldn’t be shared online. Of the 23% who were OK with sharing, 15% said they’d post them if they weren’t weird, whereas 7% said they should be shared regardless.
Banal brilliance: the lesser-known romantic milestones
As part of our survey, we wanted to take a more granular look at the relationship milestones people hold dear. Part of the reason behind this was to expose some of the not-so-obvious moments people cherish, and reveal what people consider as signs you’re in a serious relationship. It turns out that some of the things you might take for granted are considered landmark events.
Take for example deleting your dating apps. Over half (56%) of the respondents surveyed said that scrubbing your smartphone was the most significant not-so-obvious relationship milestone. The second milestone, which 42% of our respondents flagged up as sign of things getting serious, was leaving a toothbrush at your partner’s place. Sharing a shower with your beau was the third most popular lesser-known milestone, with 40% of the vote.
However, these results were drastically altered when looking at the question through the gender lens. For example, 64% of women consider deleting your dating apps the most important not-so-obvious milestone, compared to just 36% of men. Interestingly, most men (59%) said that working out together was more important to them, closely followed by showering together (57%). Clearly guys want to highlight their hygienic habits!
Memorable milestone moments
So how about the more popularized milestones? We also wanted to discover what stood out for our respondents in terms of memorable moments. When asked to choose the three most significant milestones you can share with someone, our members agreed on a very heart-warming event. A whopping 61% of those surveyed said that “saying I love you” is the most significant relationship milestone.
The second most significant milestone our users opted for, with 50% of the vote, was meeting each other’s families. This was then followed by moving in together, which clinched 40% of the overall vote. It’s surprising to see that meeting a partner’s loved ones and living together scored so highly, particularly as they beat such stalwart milestones like the first kiss (37%) and getting married (36%) to the podium!
Unlike the lesser-known milestones discussed above, there wasn’t much variation when it came to gender differences. Perhaps unsurprisingly, 40% of men said that the first sleepover was their most significant milestone, compared to just 24% of women. Men were also more likely to value moving in together (45%) than women (36%).
It must be love
Considering that saying I love you to a partner was ranked so highly by our members, we decided to explore these fabled words in a bit more detail. Moreover, we wanted to have a closer look at timings; within which timeframe is it proper to tell your partner that you love them? Interestingly, men and women were split on when they’d say those all-important three words.
For women, taking a more reserved approach is preferred. Over a third (36%) would wait up to six months to tell their partner they’re in love, while 32% would keep it within the three-month mark to spill the beans. A mere 10% would say a hasty “I love you” within a month, and an even smaller minority (5%) would wait until a year had passed.
Men on the other hand have markedly different ideas. 34% of fellas would declare their love within 3 months, whilst a further 22% would wait up to six months. However, just over one in four (26%) men would be happy to profess their feelings within a month. Going by our female respondents’ replies, if you’re one of these chaps, it might be worth holding off a bit!
Your romantic milestones
Last but most certainly not least, we invited our respondents to share some of their personal milestones with us. From the most memorable to some of the side-splittingly funny moments, check out the video below for our pick of the best milestones our participants shared.
Ready to meet someone special and start forging your very own romantic milestones? Register with EliteSingles today and get your search for love underway!
*Anonymous data from users registered with EliteSingles, collected April 2018