PMI, or Premature Intimacy, is defined by dating app Plenty of Fish as sharing too much, too soon with someone you’re dating. This dating trend spotlights the singles who accelerate their quest for intimacy.
21Ninety spoke with Eva Gallagher, Plenty of Fish’s resident dating expert, to get a better understanding of what PMI is and how it can affect budding relationships.
What exactly is PMI?
Of all the dating trends, this one is for those who tend to get ahead of themselves. PMI is a slight deviation from TMI (too much information) and is instead about oversharing and overwhelming in a romance. Gallagher suggests that feeling ready to deep-dive into your life’s secrets with a new partner is normal. Everyone is different. “PMI can arise when one party accelerates steps of a relationship before the other person may be ready,” she advises.
Gallagher explains that there are many ways that PMI may show up in a relationship or during the early stages of one. Different types of PMI include sharing sensitive personal information, intense emotions, or physical intimacy. In one example, Gallagher explains that the person you’re dating could PMI by sharing heavy family drama in a casual conversation on a first date.
“Though open and honest communication is essential (and a great way to get to know someone!), accidentally engaging in PMI could cause the other person to feel overwhelmed,” says Gallagher. “Sharing will always be one of the most important elements in a relationship, but make sure you’re mindful of timing and context,”she continues.
Why is PMI Trending in the Dating Scene?
The question remains: what makes PMI such an anticipated dating trend? The answer lies in dating apps and technology. They’ve altered the way we socially approach dating. Dating expert Gallagher sees the benefit of this.
“As technology plays a bigger role in our dating experiences, talking to someone through social media, video/live stream, texting, or dating apps can introduce a unique element of comfort,” she explains. It makes it easier for singles to share personal information and emotions early on.”
Living in a world where dating is often digitalized means spending extra time ensuring that intentions are clearly presented. While it’s the preferred way to meet a new partner, it’s easy to be misunderstood through a screen, as dating app users understand all too well. Whether risking being seen as a beige flag or being ghosted, communication is key in the dating world now more than ever.
Interestingly, this trend appears to affect Millennials more significantly than Gen Z daters. Based on an August 2023 survey of 6,000 Plenty of Fish members, 41% of Millennials said they knew someone who engaged in oversharing too quickly compared to only 29% of Gen Z. This difference may stem from various cultural differences. These include Gen Z’s increased comfort with openness and familiarity with sharing online. Either way, Gen Z and Millenial daters must embrace the perfect balance of handling vulnerable PMI moments if they want dating success.
How Can Daters Handle and Recover from PMI?
For Gallagher, the answer to salvaging a pending relationship after PMI is all about learning how to recover smoothly and honestly. Gallagher’s advice is rooted in the power of dialogue. After engaging in PMI, initiate an open and honest conversation with the other person.
“This could include offering an apology, taking a step back, and reflecting on your behavior,” explains Gallagher. “While there might be some initial awkwardness, it’s important to recognize that PMI often comes from a place of connection – wanting to get to know someone or wanting someone to get to know you on a deeper level. Oversharing early in a relationship isn’t always a red flag. So, establish clear boundaries and ensure the person you are dating is on the same page,” Gallagher continues.
It’s about balancing being open to vulnerability and being transparent about appropriateness and boundaries.
It’s best to note that PMIs may also be harmless, indicating nerves more than anything,” she explains. The excitement overtook the moment and created an overwhelming but unknowing PMI scenario. “Getting to know someone is one of the most exciting aspects of dating, so know that often, PMI comes from a place of desiring that connectedness,” says Gallagher.