How to turn a summer fling into the real thing

Real couples open up about how they turned their summer crushes into long-term partnerships.

By Shannon Christie

How to turn a summer fling into the real thing
©iStockphoto.com/Yuri Arcurs
Connecting with someone new in the summer can be as easy as bonding over a shared favourite burger joint or witnessing the same beautiful sunset. But, as the days get shorter and gelato season comes to a close, there are a few tried-and-true techniques to help your relationship evolve beyond summer-fling status.

We spoke with a few lucky couples who took their summer hookups to the next level, and they were happy to share their insider tips on how you can too.

1. Meet the parents
The desire to get to know aspects of your crush's personality beyond what you see once a week on the beach or baseball field indicates that you two have long-term potential. One surefire way of giving your fling some staying power is to expand your introductions and get to know who you may end up spending Thanksgiving with.

"I met my current girlfriend in an intramural summer softball league. We would banter a bit during warm-ups and she had a good sense of humour when I mocked her batting stance. I would say that I knew it was going to be more than a summer thing when her family flew in for a visit halfway through the summer and I actually wanted to meet them and see what she was like in a different light." -- Mike, 35, Toronto

2. Find other things in common
Although one summer activity (be it a summer job or sports league) has brought you together, try to find broader common ground. Share likes, dislikes, secret obsessions, hobbies and hidden talents.

"I met my husband when we were both working at a call centre in New Brunswick one summer -- not exactly an inspiring setting for romance. I looked forward to every break and every lunch hour to get the chance to talk with him. At first we bonded over how much we hated our jobs but, as we got to know one another, we discovered a mutual love of outdoor music festivals, Canadian indie bands and travel. I knew we were going to last more than the summer when we quit our jobs at the same time to drive to Montreal for the Osheaga Music and Arts Festival." -- Kelly, 33, Moncton, N.B.

Page 1 of 2 -- Discover two more ways to turn your summer fling into a more serious partnership on page 2.

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