The last paragraph you wrote is really what meant the most to me here. I've kind of been going through stages where I get closer and closer to knowing myself and thus, being able to conduct my relationships in a way that is genuine to me. It reminds me a lot of what you're said because something I keep seeing over and over again in my life is that trying to compensate by being someone I am not only makes me miserable and shortchanges the people in my life. Eventually it takes more and more to hold the facade together and I end up being angry at those I love for some vague, undefinable reason (which I am coming to understand).
Very glad you found a use for it. EVEN if it isn't something you need ALL of the time, I find it very helpful IN an argument. As soon as one of us gets ticked now we say "so if I understand you correctly, you are saying..." and it lightens the whole mood.
However, him and I disagreed on what a "dating" relationship should be and could not seem to come to a consensus. .... If anyone has suggestions, I would love to hear them.
Yes-I have a suggestion-use a new term.
"dating" has a preconcieved definition for both of you-and those definitions don't match.
Come up with a term for what the ACTION is that you are trying to negotiate.
for me "making out" means anything before intercourse.
for gg "making out" is kissing and touching-but not touching "private parts" of each other.
So if I want to talk about when it's appropriate for me to make out by MY definition with someone,
I might say this,
"ok so when I am building intimacy with a good friend I want to be able to caress them to orgasm and have them caress me to orgasm without intercourse."
Now we can negotiate because the "trigger word" that we don't define the same is removed and so the feelings of "oh yeah we are SO on a different page" are lessened somewhat.
Now-obviously-there still may be issues if he feels I should not be doing that activity-but we can focus more specifically now since we aren't arguing about the details of what words mean what to whom.
Also-another detail that it sounds like you two are ACTUALLY struggling over is what IS "allowable" behavior for either of you WITH OTHER PEOPLE while you are in a "boyfriend/girlfriend" relationship with one another.
It sounds like he wants the right to limit WHEN you can do WHAT you do with other people.
But you don't feel that is appropriate.
One of the keys here is to simplify the conversation-it's not about when, it's about IF.
Can you two agree that:
YES he does have a right to limit when you do anything with another
NO he does not have that right
(and same for you in regards to him-even though he's not practicing it right now)
Only if you both agree that limiting when IS an agreeable boundary within the context of relationship can you move to the next step which is what is that limitation.
I highly suggest really considering the first question-not only in regards to your relationship with HIM but in terms of ANY relationships you have. Is that limit something you are comfortable with, having a partner put limits on your time frames for intimacy with others?
Personally I have a VERY complicated answer-but everyone's answers differ!
You might find that if you are creative your answer is yes.
Consider this, maybe you are willing to agree that you won't be sexually (assuming you share the same definition of sexually) involved with someone before you have had at least 10 conversations with them, or 10 hours of conversation....
or maybe it's 10 hours of face to face time, or maybe it's 10 hours of quality time spent, or maybe its WHATEVER.
There is always the possibility that you two can't come to a reasonable compromise-but it's great that you are trying. That is one step forward ANYWAY because you will both be clearer about what you want/need to be happy in a relationship.