Understanding Serial Monogamy

By: William Drake

Updated July 14, 2021

Medically Reviewed By: Kay Adkins, LPC

What Is A Serial Monogamist?

While many of your friends have been out having a good time, casually dating as many people as possible before they settle down, have you always been in long-term relationship after long-term relationship? If so, then you may be a perpetual relationship person, or you may be a perpetual dater. We can help explain the difference.

How to Know If You May Be A Serial Relationship Seeker

Perpetual monogamy includes someone who is always in a relationship. If this is you, being single might make you feel uncomfortable. You may also skip social events if you are unable to find a date or partner to bring with you. You might be uncomfortable at the thought of being alone at all. These people are also guilty of talking about their exes, even when they're in a relationship with someone new. The reason for this is due to the relationships overlapping or happening within a short span of each other; you may not be giving yourself enough time to get closure before jumping into a new relationship. You might find that you just can't help yourself.

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Another sign is if you feel uncomfortable going anywhere without a partner. If you don't have a partner and you're invited to an event, you'd rather skip it than attend alone. You also may also find it impossible to have casual sex without developing emotional attachment. You're more about the emotional connection rather than the physical one. 

Things To Know About Perpetual Monogamy and Dating Someone With It

What happens if you're not into perpetual monogamy, but you find yourself dating someone who is? How do you prepare for that level of commitment? Perpetual monogamy may sound intimidating, but the reality is that people like this know exactly what can cause a relationship to end, and they refrain from doing those things. You may find the experience of dating in perpetual monogamy to be a relief from the kind of people you used to date. For one thing, a perpetual relationship person is not ready to walk away just because you fought over something minor. Another thing about them is that a person like this is intent on making sure that you're happy. 

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How Do You Know If the Person You're Dating Is A Perpetual Dater?

Maybe you're back on the dating scene with the intention of finding a perpetual relationship person because you've had enough of perpetual daters and short, meaningless flings. How would you be able to tell right off the bat that someone is a perpetual dater, so you can know before you get too involved?
A perpetual dater won't care that they don't know much about you before trying to whisk you away. They might ask you on a date before even knowing your name! And you'll know they won't know enough about you yet because you'll also barely know anything about them. Charm is another factor to keep an eye out for. If someone is an expert at being charming, it may be because they've had plenty of practice at it.  It may work on you too, and that's okay, so long as you recognize it for what it is.
Perpetual daters also avoid getting into heavy, meaningful conversation. If they don't ask you any in-depth questions, then this is a sign that they are not interested in getting to know you as a person, but more interested in living in the moment.

Difficulties of Serial Dating or Monogamy

Whether you are a perpetual relationship person, a perpetual dater, or in a relationship with one type or the other, we are not here to judge. Everybody has different wants, needs, and expectations from a relationship. Both types have their advantages, which may be suitable for you.

Am I A Serial Monogamist?
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A perpetual relationship seeker may have never learned the values of independence, while the perpetual dater may have never experienced a committed relationship. Both of these are important aspects of life.

Consider Talking About Your Dating Habits with Someone

BetterHelp is here to listen, discuss, and help you make progress on a variety of relationship issues. Consider talking to someone about what might be troubling you, including the hangups of perpetual monogamy/dating. BetterHelp is an affordable, convenient, and professional e-counseling website that can help you work through any issues by matching you with a licensed therapist. Below are some counselor reviews, from people experiencing similar relationship issues.

Counselor Reviews

"Andrea has been nothing short of wonderful since I started counseling with her. She always makes me feel heard and validated, while at the same time challenging me to question the way I think about and react to different situations. She is thoughtful, caring, and nonjudgmental. I have seen a huge difference in myself, my relationships, and my happiness since I started working with her."
"Dr. Ciraky has proven to be an excellent sounding board and has provided tools to work through my relationship issues. He has been insightful and given me things to think about to direct me in my decision-making process. I would highly recommend him."


Neither perpetual monogamy/dating aren't inherent problems. But if bad habits are creeping up, from a lack of intimacy, self respect, or individual identity, it may be time to reach out for assistance. Take the first step to fulfilling relationships today.

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