Dating scenes in the movies are the reason why we have high expectations when it comes to dating. In many instances, the young boy drives to the young girl’s house to pick her up where he is greeted by her parents – her father, who gives him the ‘don’t hurt my daughter’ stare, and her mother, who gushes over just how handsome he is. They then go off for dinner, before he drives her back home, usually a couple of minutes before curfew, and if he’s lucky, he might get a quick kiss in the car.

As the romantic dreamer I am, I wish this still was the case. But we all know that dating in 2016 is nothing like this.

In fact, to me, dating doesn’t even exist today. Either we are, or we all know someone that is sorta seeing someone, but they’re sorta not, because no one dates anymore, no one is exclusive, and no one likes labels. Nobody wants to be in a relationship, but no one wants to be alone either.

A guy won’t take the girl he’s been ‘talking to’ out on an actual date, but when he hears the that girl say “We’re just friends, I think I’m single”, he loses it. A girl doesn’t want to admit she has a thing for this guy, but when she sees him like another girls’ Instagram photo, she gets mad over it. But because you’re not in a relationship with one another, you don’t address this issue because you don’t want to look crazy.

I came across this meme on Facebook the other day, which when I read it, I immediately agreed, which prompted me to write this post.

The meme describes a ‘situationship’ as “let’s just chill, have sex, and be confused on the fact we are not together but have official emotions for each other.”

It’s the relationship you have with someone where you’re definitely more than friends, but you’re not boyfriend/girlfriend or girlfriend/girlfriend or boyfriend/boyfriend with each other. The feelings are there and everyone around you can see the chemistry between both of you, but you’re not officially together.

Nobody really admits their feelings anymore. I think with the whole craze for internet dating now, people are able to fall into a situationship much quicker. Hooking up with someone has become far easier because in reality, you don’t really have to talk to them much. I think with internet dating, the grafting has been lost. No one works hard to get someone anymore; everyone is just… easy. A simple swipe right, basically telling the person, “Yeah, I fancy you and think you’re alright looking” and you’re basically in.

How does this affect our mental health?

This state of feeling in-between can be very confusing. You constantly ask yourself, “Are we together? Are we not together?”

Our brains go into overdrive, trying to work out the reasons why you think you’re in a relationship verse the reasons why you think you’re not.

As females, we tend to overanalyse almost everything. Situationships doesn’t help with this because they only will ever lead to over analysation and questioning and curiosity because the situationship doesn’t have a solid answer. You don’t where you stand and where this ‘thing’ is heading.

You never know when you’re going to see that person again, or worse, IF you’re going to see that person again. You don’t know when they’re going to call or text you. You don’t know if you’re the only person they’re seeing.

All these unknown questions can leave you feeling sad, anxious, and cause you to become that obsessive, jealous person that we all don’t want to be. You tell yourself you have no right to feel that way because they’re not your boyfriend/girlfriend but you cannot help but feel that way. And then you blame yourself for falling for someone in a situationship.

This is a vicious cycle; it is endless and you will constantly keep thinking of the same thread of ideas unless you take control of the situationship yourself.

Once you begin to question the situation itself, you then move on questioning yourself. You ask yourself, ‘Am I the reason why he/she won’t go official with me? Am I not pretty enough? Am I not smart enough? Am I not good enough?”

Situationships not only affects our mental health, but also our physical health. If you follow him/her on Social Media, you can pretty much stalk his/her every move, which FYI, is really, really not recommended at all!! You can see who he/she is tweeting/talking to via Twitter, you can see who he/she is hanging out with via Snapchat and you can see who’s picture he/she is liking via Instagram.

You then find yourself clicking onto that the person’s profile who they sent a tweet to or whose Instagram picture they liked to find all the gossip on them, and then you look at their circle of friends and family and before you know it, you’re like ten persons deep and you’re in full stalker mode.

Looking at the other people your other half is talking to or whose picture they’re liking or whatever they are doing only makes you compare yourself to them -- “Do they fancy them? Maybe they don’t want to go official with me because I’m not as pretty as them” -- which will always make you feel pretty rubbish about yourself.

Your self-esteem is low and no one to reassure you they like you for you (because in situationships you NEVER talk about feelings, ever) and this could take a toll on your physical health. For example, if you see the guy you’re having a thing with like pictures of fit, tanned girls, and you’re insecure about your tum, you might go on a crazy diet to emulate the pictures he is liking.

Why do we settle for these situationships? Is it because we are all scared of commitment? Scared of rejection? Scared of heartbreak?

I think we all settle for situationships because we are all scared of allowing ourselves to become vulnerable with someone. Where you allow yourself to completely fall in love with someone without holding up the barriers. I think it’s also the case of not rocking the boat. You and the person you’re seeing have this unspoken arrangement and it’s going well. By bringing up the relationship talk may end what you have. After all, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?

Whilst situationships can be a lot of fun, I think it is something you shouldn’t settle for. I believe that everyone is entitled to have someone who truly cares about them, who isn’t afraid to show you off. You know your worth and you deserve to be shown off to the world.

Being in a ‘situation’ where you finally know where you stand, where you know that you’re completely solid with that person will stop the anxiety, the obsessive and the jealousy surrounding the relationship. It will not only leave you in a healthy relationship with your partner, but a healthy relationship with your health, both mental and physical, and that’s the most important relationship you can have. 

Published by Jessica Lam