Why It's Okay to Talk to Multiple People When You're Single

There are no rules to being single. There’s no rulebook that says what you can and cannot do, and that’s why you make up your own rules. That’s why talking to multiple partners while you’re single is okay. Being single is like being on the show The Bachelor or The Bachelorette. There may be multiple people that pique your interest, and you don’t have to talk to just one of them; you can talk to all of them. Limiting yourself to one person to talk to at a time while you’re single is inhibiting you to reaching your full potential. By talking to multiple people, you get more of a feel of what you’re looking for in a relationship.

However, even though I said there were no rules to being single, there are some rules you should follow when you’re talking to multiple people. Not everyone is going to understand this concept of having multiple partners while you're single; some people may even disagree with it. Here are some tips to help you navigate this sometimes tricky situation.

  1. 1. Inform every partner you're talking to that you're also talking to other people

    People catch feelings easily, and it’s easy for them to think that they are the only person you’re talking to. This could lead to unnecessary drama in the end. When things have the potential to serious, maybe after the third or fourth date, you should probably let your partners know you’re talking to multiple people. There’s no need to tell them right away on the first date, but it is something that will eventually have to come up. They may get upset, but they should appreciate your honesty and transparency.

  2. 2. Be safe; use protection and take precautions

    If you’re also having sex with multiple partners, always use protection. Unless your partner asks if you’re sleeping with other people, you should not feel obligated to tell them. However, if your partner does ask, then you should let them know. This isn’t something you should lie to them about, but this is also not something you need to tell them if it doesn’t come up in conversation. However, if you have an STI or STD, or if one of your other partners reveals that they have one, you need to let all of your partners know. Remember after each partner, it’s recommended you get tested!

  3. 3. Let them know if you've lost your feelings for them

    After months of talking to someone, you may find that this is not what you’re looking for. For example, (some personal tea from my life) I started talking to this guy on Tinder the day my ex and I broke up. Initially, I thought I had feelings for this guy after our first two dates; I thought I really liked him. However, after about three months, I lost interest because I realized he didn’t match the qualities I was looking for. While I was talking to him, I was also talking to five others (yes, five!). There were qualities in the other guys that I saw that he didn’t have. Like I said earlier, this process of having multiple partners gives you a feel of what you’re looking for, and I realized he wasn’t it. After I lost feelings for him, we had a phone conversation one night, and I told him I wasn’t into anymore. He was heartbroken, but I’m sure he’s okay now. It’s better to tell someone you lost feelings than to continue to pretend.

  4. 4. Drop 'em like it's hot

    Now, after testing the waters and figuring out which partner you’d like to continue dating (if you’re into monogamy, but that’s a different conversation), this is the time where you drop the rest. Make sure the partner you’re choosing has the same intentions as you. Don’t play yourself and drop all your partners for someone who doesn’t have the same goals as you.

    Communicate to your partners that you decided to move on and would no longer like to go out with them. Don’t just ghost them, but let them know what’s actually going on. However, blocking them may be the key if they continue to cross boundaries and don’t appreciate your decision.

  5. 5. Okay, here's an exception to Rule #1

    There is one exception where you don’t have to tell your partners that you are talking to other people. I think this is better explained with another personal story. So, after talking to six guys at once, one of those six really piqued my interest. By our second and third date, I knew he was someone I wanted to talk to long term, and we already had a discussion about intentions and what we were looking for. I never told him that I had multiple partners because I knew I would be dropping them all (which I did.) I never had to tell the one I had chosen because, in my mind, there were no others, it was only him.

Talking to multiple people while you’re single is a journey. You discover a lot about yourself and what you’re looking for. However, a lot of drama can come from it. Some hearts may get broken in the process, but that’s a part of life. Sometimes things don’t work out because that person just wasn’t who you were looking for but in the end, the most important thing to remember is that communication is key throughout this entire process.