Just when you thought you had figured out everything there is about new-age relationships, the millennials have decided to throw yet another curve ball our way. The newest relationship trend is called a situationship, and it's getting more and more common by the minute.
What exactly is a situationship? According to Urban Dictionary, a situationship is kinda like a relationship but more of a situation (Sounds just about as confusing as the actual relationship). It is basically a pseudo-relationship, or a placebo, masking itself as a relationship. It smells like a relationship, it sorta looks like a relationship, and it may even feel like one, but it's not. It's basically somewhere in between friends with benefits and a committed relationship.
Welcome to 2018. Getting anything you want right at your doorstep has never been easier, there are ATMs for cupcakes, and getting what you want out of a relationship has never been tougher.
This is all very fascinating you may say, but how do you navigate the murky world of sort-of relationships to know you are in one? For starters, we have nine signs that you are in a situationship, so read on to check if any of them ring true.
1.You have no title: When someone asks you what you are, you get flustered and mumble something to the tune of 'we are figuring it out' or 'going with the flow'.
2.You still attend events solo: Weddings, Diwali parties, your bestie's birthday, you name it and you are in a fix. You hint and probe if they want to come along but end up going by yourself more often then not.
3.You have lots of sleepovers: You don't just leave after sex, but end up spending the night and even having breakfast together in the morning. You might even have left your toothbrush at each other's place.
4.Texting is your primary form of contact: There is no "good morning babe" call or message, just some small talk and casual chatting till you make your next plan to Netflix and Chill.
Which brings us to...
5.You don't go on a lot of actual dates: Most of your plans involve meeting up for a casual drink, catching a movie together or doing the 'Netflix and chill' routine. There is no actual romance or romantic dates.
6.You don't discuss anything: Future plans, holidays, feelings, it's all left to guesswork. Nobody really knows what the other person is thinking and they are too afraid to bring it up.
7.You are not dating anyone else: It's as if you are exclusive with someone, but not really. Your relationship needs are being met by one person, so you are not really meeting other people, even though there is nothing holding you back from doing so.
8.You haven't met their family or friends: Your closest friends may have an inkling there is something going on, but to the rest of the world you guys are just friends who hang out together.
9.You barely have any pictures together: Even if you do have some, they are not posted on Facebook or social media or made public in any way.
So, Why Exactly is a Situationship Such a Bad Idea?
Some may claim that casual hook-ups are the problem, but in reality, situationships are much more toxic.
With casual hook-ups, it’s clear from the very beginning that it’s going to be strictly business, and then both parties can go off on their respective merry ways. In situationships, however, there is a very clear “you like me, and I like you” narrative with the added benefits of sex and dates, but no one takes it further than that.
As if the whole ordeal of simply defining your non-relationship isn’t stressful enough, then comes the issue of exclusivity. How do you know if they’re still seeing other people or if you’re able to keep your options open without causing some kind of rift?
And of course, the lack of an official relationship means that your non-partner has plenty of opportunities to see people other than you.
Eeks! So What Does One Do About It?
There is only one solution — to man (or woman) up and have "the talk". Things can go one of two ways: the other person can agree that they would like to place a definite label on the situation, or they’ll freeze up and promptly disappear.
If you both do manage to agree to be together, congratulations! You have successfully made it through the murky situationship waters and are now in a fully defined relationship. You can go update your status in peace.
However, if it ends up with the other person disappearing, you might feel even more confused than when you were in the situation in the first place. If you were never officially together, then how can you have broken up? The pain will still very much be there, but it might get awkward to talk about. You might feel like you’re not entitled to your feelings because 'it was never real'.
The Final Take Away
Don't beat yourself up if you're sad when things end. You were in (for all intents and purposes) a relationship, and you deserve to grieve just like anyone else.
Moving forward, there are a few ways in which you can prevent yourself from getting into a situationship in the first place.
First, stay true to your standards. Don’t settle for being someone’s side piece if you want a real relationship. Also, avoid the idea that you need some kind of romantic or sexual partner, or that being in a situationship, is better than being alone. You deserve better than that.
Remember, there is nothing wrong with being single till you find your SO, so don't settle for anything less!