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There are many milestones in a new relationship. When you decide you’re going to be exclusive or saying I love you. Some milestones are more obvious than other ones. You know your relationship is moving forward and going in a positive direction. Then there are some millstones that are not so obvious yet make an impact. Sometimes the little things your significant other does speak louder than words.

For example, you two been dating for a few months. You’ve decided to focus your energy on each another and overnight slumber parties are becoming more common. You’re spending more and more time at their place and your car is turning into a second closet. Now comes the awkward time where you wonder, should I just start leaving clothes at his house? I’m over here all the time it would be so much easier to just leave some stuff behind.

DO NOT DO THIS. Don’t start leaving stuff behind at his place. If you try to be sly and leave an outfit, a hair brush or something behind he’s going to start thinking you’re moving the relationship to the next level without you two having a discussion together about it. You’re taking control of the relationship in your hands and becoming the director of where it’s going. This is going to overwhelm and possibly make him freak out. He’ll think you’re slowly moving in and taking over.

Remember at this point he is still chasing you. If you start moving in or leaving stuff behind at his house, now you’ve turned the tables and are chasing him. Once you start chasing him you kill the desire in him. Men need the chase. Let them chase you.

I think women mentally are often ahead of men in the relationship department and know what we want before they do. Which is fine, but just step back and give him some room to breathe and be comfortable with where things are going. Always keep your options open until there’s a ring on that finger. As soon as you start putting pressure on the situation you cut off the oxygen in the relationship and it starts to die.

If you give him space then great things start to happen. When you know deep down inside I’ll be fine if he stays or goes, then he’ll either step up or disappear for good. When he’s comfortable with where the relationship is going then he’ll show signs he wants you to stay such as buying you a toothbrush to keep at his place.

The toothbrush has become a relationship icon even in tv shows such as Sex in the City. Carrie was ecstatic when Big let her use the pink attachment on his electric handle. When a man gives you a toothbrush it’s his subtle way of saying I like you staying here with me. You know he wants you around. It’s safe to say the relationship is going in a good direction, unless you find storage of multiple toothbrushes in his closet. Then he either has multiple women spending the night or he’s a closet extreme couponer.

Tara Richter

Tara Richter is an Internet Dating Coach in Tampa Bay. She is the author of “The Dating Jungle Series” and an Internet TV Show Host.