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When I initially told him I needed something less serious, he withdrew emotionally, fearing I’d hurt him.

He rid himself of the possibility of dating seriously because he thought I would always be opposed.

Then, I figured, he’s a grown man who can make his own decisions. I did, however, want to keep him honest in the relationship, so we ended up having multiple talks, what I would call check-ins.

But our relationship didn’t naturally fall into this comfortable groove.

We had a few big talks accompanied by a few big reveals. I’ve heard this question from partners before, and it’s one that always makes me cringe.

I always thought that casually dating — and doing it successfully — was a myth.

An urban legend that only a few lucky people could experience.

Or, given that both of us were busy with our careers — me as a writer, him as law student — was this level of commitment ideal?

These check-ins kept us on the same page, and we promised we would be honest about our feelings and expectations.

The premise was simple: Are we okay with how things are going in our relationship?

Are we finding ourselves really falling for the other person, and would we like to take things to the next level?

Drunkenly, on a stoop on Commercial Avenue, we did a final reflection on our relationship. This casual dating thing was new for both of us, and yes, we both had some regrets, but overall it worked.

He regretted having a wall up, he said, something he did to protect himself.

Most commonly, the relationship escalates into a committed, monogamous relationship, or it fizzles out, with both parties simply over the fling, or because one person starts to care for the other person more.

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