Unofficial relationships with official emotions.
Situationship: that intensely confusing space between friendship and a monogamous relationship. We tend to think of it as a thing that only occurs between heterosexual couples because the man wants it that way. Wrong!
Gone are the days when all a girl wanted from life was to belong to a man that could only exist within the parameters of her mind, a.k.a Mr. Perfect, Prince Charming, or my personal favourite “The One.” Sometimes, a situationship is an ideal set-up that both parties willingly and knowingly enter into. Like Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher did in their 2011 film No Strings Attached. Other times, it is a set up that someone finds themselves in it because they want to be in a relationship so badly that they will ignore the reality of the situation (pun intended).
In the case of both parties being on the same page, one or both people are lying to themselves about how in-control of their emotions they are. Whether it’s a situationship of your own making or one you find yourself in, one thing underscores them all: once the two of you are no longer on the same page, the magic fades and all that is left is confusion. Those who refuse to see the situationship for what it is just end up at this point earlier on. As cheesy as the term “magic” sounds, that is exactly what it feels like at first.
You suddenly have this great person that you vibe with and just want to talk to all the time about everything and nothing. You also have none of the imagined pressure that comes with “labels” but all the benefits of a friendship. Note, I said “imagined pressure.” Another bonus of these friendship benefits is that you get make out with them!
Sounds great right?
It is. Until all the mixed and missed signals, double entendres, innuendos and jealousy creep in. That is when you get all the negativity of a relationship with none of the guarantees of an amicable solution. Or, what my generation likes to call “catching feelings.” Because it is not a relationship (and there is rarely ever any promise of it turning into one), you’re not always motivated to swallow your pride and fix things. “F*** if I ever let a nigga think I care” right? We have become a generation so caught up in not catching feelings that we’d rather mess things up than be the one to admit how we feel. Or to even admit that we feel. Feelings are attributed to weakness and who wants to be weak? Definitely not my generation. We exist between two worlds – a virtual and a physical reality – where the order of the day is “not giving a f***.”
This is also evident through the people we choose to idolise and chastise. I may be attributing this quote to the wrong person but I think it was Barney Stinson in How I Met Your Mother who said “love is a game and the one who says ‘I love you’ first is the one who loses.” Barney and his philandering ways are popular and legen… wait for it… dary among our generation. Just as popular as chastising Drake for purporting to be the “good/emotional guy” (I say purporting because, well, now we all know what a wolf in sheep’s clothing he might be). It is this emotional honesty however, that actually makes Drake the ideal soundtrack to any situationship. By the sound of things, Drake has been in a few of his own situationships. So he would understand that another downside to situationships is how they play out. Mostly through text messages that are open to interpretation or can’t even be deciphered.
But, when things become unclear, the worst thing you can do is involve your friends. Everything becomes more confusing when you do that! You are essentially getting advice about someone you barely know from someone else who knows even less about them than you do. How is your best friend going to know more about “your bae” than you do? All your friend can do is speculate and speculation is like assumption – it is the mother of all f*** ups. Being straightforward about how you feel helps in understanding each other but it is NOT a guarantee that you will get what you want.
In my opinion, they can only end in one of three ways (factoring in all the complications).
The two of you can:
1. Revert back to being friends
It will be very weird at first but you will eventually get over it. If this happens however, the feelings you may have had were more because you can’t be friends with someone you loved but can’t be with. Falling back into old patterns would be the worst thing that you can do though. Like “did you not learn your lesson the first time around?”
2. Let the situationship evolve into a relationship
What more is there to say? And they all lived happily ever after… ? You’ve seen the rom-coms (No Strings Attached, Friends with Benefits), you know how it goes.
3. Never speak to each other again
A number of things could be the reason for this. Either way, it’s the best solution in the event that things ended badly. Out of sight, out of mind. Before you know it, you’ll be like “Damon who? Oh… that Damon!…”
To say that situationships are a bad thing would be an exaggeration. It is our innate ability (as human beings) to complicate things that poses a problem.
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