You’re not in a relationship. Well, not technically. We’ve all heard the euphemisms: you’re “talking to him,” you have a “thing,” you’re both “interested.” Being immersed in a culture where these terms are part of our everyday vocabulary, it’s easy to think that these non-relationships are normal. Well, here’s a cold, hard truth: they’re really not. They’re actually kind of weird when you think about them, and they may end up causing you lots of emotional trauma, if they haven’t already.
These are the relationships that we don’t blame you for having, but totally think you need to ditch:
- The guy you hook up with when you’re in the same zip code. Back at your parents’ for Thanksgiving? Home for the holidays? High school reunion? In addition to all of the other time-honored traditions you’ll be observing, there’s that guy – the one you always hook up with whenever you’re back in the same zip code, usually the one where you grew up in. It’s time to stop living in the past and move on.
- The guy you agreed to marry if you’re 35 and haven’t found anybody else by then. You’ve always gotten along really well, and he’s attractive, but you just never had that special spark. Um, hello? Why would that change magically after you hit your 35th birthday? Why settle? You’re better off staying single and independent.
- The guy that’s obsessed with you but you pretend you have no idea. Maybe you don’t want to ruin the friendship, or maybe you just kind of like the attention. But it’s not fair to him, and it’s an insult to his intelligence. Acknowledge his feelings, tell him straight out that you’re not interested, and move on.
- The guy from Tinder that you never actually met but still talk to all the time. You texted up a storm at first, but never got past those initial stages. Now, he randomly sends you LOLcats memes and other snarky comments that make you crack up. It’s time to take this offline; either meet him in person or stop letting him waste your time.
- The guy who doesn’t want you but won’t let you go. Maybe it’s an old flame, or a classmate. He’s aware that you like him and has made it clear that he’s not romantically interested. But he keeps giving you just enough to keep you around. It’s time to speak up for yourself; don’t let him keep you dangling.
- The guy who’s your friend with benefits but doesn’t realize you’re perfect for each other. Or maybe he does realize it, but won’t say it out loud. Either way, this situation is just asking for trouble. Someone is bound to get hurt. End your friends with benefits situation before that someone is you.
- The guy who is your “work spouse” and totally gets you, but can’t actually date you. Maybe he’s already taken, maybe he’s gay, or maybe you just don’t want to mix your work life and your love life. It’s fun to have someone at work that you completely mesh with, but there comes a point where you can cross the line if you go too far. You may want to tread carefully.
The guy who you love to hook up with but wouldn’t be caught dead dating. If he texted you at 12pm, you’d ignore him. You’re just not a match. But it’s 12am, you’re awake, and you’re lonely. We get it, it’s so easy – but easy doesn’t mean that it’s good for you.