My Relationship Is Starting To Feel Like More Of A Friendship & It’s Kinda Weird

My current boyfriend and I started off as friends and now we’re dating. Things were hot and heavy when we first took things up a notch, but the more time goes on, I’m starting to feel like we’re more cut out for a platonic relationship than a long-term romance. Our relationship feels more like two buddies hanging out than a girlfriend/boyfriend situation and it’s kinda weird.

  1. Every romantic relationship should have a solid foundation of friendship, but there has to be something more. When you start dating your best friend, it’s hard to break that cycle. When you’re so used to busting each other’s balls and shootin’ the breeze, it’s easy to forget that there’s another, deeper level to this relationship. We had this instant connection when we first met, but now I’m thinking it was more of a friend connection than love.
  2. We don’t really go on dates. We mostly just “hang out” like any other BFF pairing would. We play video games, order in, go to parties, play frisbee in the park, and have movie nights. Very rarely would he ever plan a fancy, romantic evening out for the both of us. I guess it seems too frivolous and cheesy especially since we’re such a casual couple. I guess there’s a reason why real, serious couples go out and actually put effort into their relationships.
  3. We don’t call each other pet names. No babe, honey, or darling here. I don’t think we’ve ever used these terms of endearment with each other, which is weird because it’s not like I’m against calling him cute names, it just doesn’t feel natural with him for some reason. It’s more embarrassing than anything.
  4. We hang out with the same people. Since we’re friends with the same people, we can easily slip into friend mode when we hang out with them. They all know us to be a certain way and I guess we don’t want to make the hangout awkward by being all couple-y. I don’t find it that awkward, personally, but I know he does. He completely diverts his attention to his friends when we all hang out, and since I’m part of the group, I become just one of the guys again. That’s totally cool, but it just makes me think, “What is this thing between us?”
  5. He calls me “dude.” Before, when we were just friends, we’d call each other dude and bro as a joke. The problem is that he’s still doing it and I can’t tell if it’s a joke or not. It was funny and when we were just friends, but I seriously have a visceral reaction whenever he calls me dude now that we’re supposed to be a couple. I just don’t like it! To every guy out there, take note: no girl likes being called dude, man, or bro, especially when you’re dating her! It makes me think that I’m just a friend when I’m supposed to be more. Very confusing.
  6. We go dutch 95% of the time. It’s rare that he ever picks up the check. It’s not like we’ve been together for a super long time, either; we’re still in the courting phase but he’s still sticking to when we’d go out as friends and split the bill wherever we went. It would be nice to actually FEEL like we’re on a date, you know? I would love it if he made all the plans, took me out (anywhere—it doesn’t have to be fancy) and covered the bill even once.
  7. Sex is funny to us. It’s hard to take each other seriously in the sack, especially when we were friends for so long before getting together. It’s almost like we’re making fun of people who have sex instead of taking it seriously. Maybe we’re just being immature about it…or maybe we’re supposed to just be friends.
  8. We don’t really have any expectations of each other. You know how you expect your partner to be there for you, bring you coffee, be on time when they meet you, and defend you if you need it? For some reason, I don’t expect my boyfriend to always be by my side. It’s almost as if we don’t belong to each other in that couple kinda way. We’re not devoted to one another.
  9. We’re awkward with PDA. I think we’re still afraid of getting called out by our friends or something for being all lovey-dovey with each other. We still act like just two friends hanging out in public. We rarely ever hold hands, but hopefully, that will change soon.
  10. He thinks most things other couples do are cheesy. We’re both kinda cringy about all that love stuff, but he especially avoids it like the plague. He’ll be like, “Oh my God, that’s so cheesy!” if we do anything lovey-dovey. I know he’s just having fun, but I take love seriously, goddammit! We didn’t do anything for Valentine’s Day and anything that seems even remotely romantic makes his eyes roll. It’s just hard to “romance” your friend when we used to make pretend farting noises with our mouths.
Jennifer is a playwright, dancer, and theatre nerd living in the big city of Toronto, Canada. She studied Creative Writing at Concordia University and works as a lifestyle writer who focuses on Health, B2B, Tech, Psychology, Science, Food Trends and Millennial Life. She's also a coreographer, playwright, and lyricist, with choreography credits for McMaster University’s “Spring Awakening,” “Roxanne” for the Guelph Contemporary Dance Festival, and “The Beaver Den” for The LOT, among others.

You can see more of her work on her Contently page and follow her on Instagram @jenniferenchin.