define dating for me

how does one define dating? besides the pathetic “it’s just a feeling one has for the other” i could only really come up with time.  one spends more of one’s free time with that person, though i would never assume a specific amount of time (i like my alone time more than most women).  also, one GOES places together.  that seems to be the big missing in most of my relationships.  my relationships are stay at home relationships.  we talk, we play, i/they go home.  then again, i am not one who is big on PDA (unless it is at Kinky Salon…but that is a different animal all together), so perhaps some of my lovers would LIKE to go places together, or express our connection in public, and i just seem distant?  i think part of that is being overly cautious about seeming possessive.  sure, i want to be primary, but i am not going to demand it.  (this probably goes back to my comments about wanting someone that WANTS to be with me, not with someone that NEEDS me.)

i consider most of my intimate relationships to be lovers.  people i share deep emotion and sex with, but have no other commitment to.  planning plays a part in my definition.  if i run off for a weekend with a friend, even a lover, it is still intimate friendship because when we get home, i have no assumptions about planning more time together.  if i am dating someone, i make plans with them.  i assume we are going to spend time together.  i assume they are going to include me in their plans.  if i am dating someone they want people to know that.  it’s funny, if i were to LIVE with someone, i think i would require less planned free time together.  i really enjoy “being” with someone.  just having them there.  though i do like to talk to my partner a great deal, it is often about politics, economics and general impressions of society.  i am also ruthlessly efficient about activity planning.  no need to hem-haw, just say yes or no and i’ll put it on the calendar.  i miss just “being” with someone.  if i know they are coming home to me, it is not as important to me that we be somewhere together first.  is that weird?  i feel like this is all still too vague.  it would lead to misunderstandings.  are there other obvious rules that define a “dating” status?

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