SITUATIONSHIP NOT A RELATIONSHIP
I’m a self confessed hopeless romantic so from the title of this essay I would not be the righteous author.
I’ve dated and been in relationships for 8 years. I was a late bloomer on the co dependence front. Boys have been brilliant, boys have been sexy, boys have been bright, boys have been rich, poor, loving, destructive and boys have been dumb but fun. They’ve given and taken away more than any platonic acquaintance or friend ever has. “Friend” this is a word thats context lies in trust, fun, loyalty but not romantic love. None of my lovers I believe to have been my friend. Often the opposite, a complex and deep dislike yet a chemistry and desire that overrides fact and reason for much longer than a night or even a fling. For me this kind of attraction has lasted years within a long term relationship (well a couple of years).
Fighting that initial first kiss muscle memory, where you see them meeting your parents in your head is the most important and self preserving behaviour I practise. Because it’s a work of fiction created in a different era for a different society. The younger generation are picking up on the fraud, however the late eighties early nineties babies were brought up with the idea of a lasting love because they caught the last breaths of life before the internet made us all commodities. We were buying full price the day before the sale starts. As with the angry shopper we regret, but also know the retailer hid the good clothes when the sale started.
Our dreams were not just of a lasting relationship as they were back in the day. They were dreams of success and fulfilment alongside a perfect everlasting relationship, hence everyone one of my peers being devilishly good at thinking they always deserve more. They (/ a prior me) wanted the duality of a forever sweetheart and everything else life can offer and what the internet has projected on to us. Our inner toddler is fighting with our adult online cyborg. The cyborg is a rose tinted pixel projection of ourselves and it is watching other cyborgs constantly. Constantly wanting that boy or that girl or that persons mind with that persons fake arse. The toddler, however has seen and been to weddings with structured photos on hotel lawns and always been told to find ‘your better half’. We now have found our better half, the only problem being is that it’s our own online version of ourself, it’s the bloody cyborg and not another human.
We can moan about modern dating and we can say how unfair it is blah blah or we can accept the reality and change the perception of what we need. Do we need a monogamous forever love anymore? I don’t believe I do (inner toddler sighs). My Prince Charming has ultimately been myself. My relationships and lovers have been the sugar of my life but not the protein. Recognising that has freed me somewhat. A pudding is always enjoyed but vitamins and protein are essential and they come from me not another. The 22 and minus age group understand that and are drinking less and thinking about who they are more, which I think is an incredible thing.
Back to the toddler fight. We will always have that annoying voice telling us “he/she is just around the corner” and I want to hear that voice but I now no longer believe in its intentions. That little voice actually wants romance, intellect and kisses not marriage and happily ever after (in the old sense of the words).
The happiest I’ve felt in my romantic adult life was a “situation”. I met a boy, we were both in separate places and we had a connection on every level. We never spoke about being in a relationship or defined it in anyway whatsoever, it simply didn’t matter. At that time in both our lives we were individuals who weren’t looking at anything other than where we were personally and when we were together ... well at each other. Dropping that forced fake date reaction of trying to be cute, thick, overly political urrrgh I could go one unfortunately frees you. With this boy I wasn’t trying to sell myself In order to make a play to be his bride. I was free to be just me and he was just him and it was beautiful, pure, sexy and unbounded.
My two long term “heteronormative” relationships were riddled with power battles and mixed values because who I was, was not actually what they wanted. The toddler had decided I was their husband and that was that. I wasn’t and didn’t really let them know until it was too late and me and them had to behave awfully to get that fact across. One of these relationships ended with passion and anger as the chemistry was always there (and still would be) the other ending was worse, complete disscontempt and apathy, it simply didn’t mean anything to me. I had listened to that voice so much that it willingly led me to a place of sadness and compromise. I wanted to believe in the co habitation relationship so much that I betrayed myself for the first time in my life. All my other breakups had been sponsored by Amy, Lana and Whitney, this one was not and I was only passionate about my anger, how had I been so stupid???
After months of not taking numbers, returning a glance over a bar or responding to an Instagram message I’m now back in the saddle but it is a different horse. I have enjoyed the moment of a kiss and how that feels, I have embraced and watched Netflix but now I’m enlightened and free of the shackles. Understanding that I can have intimacy, support and love without the constraints has been a reviewing and revealing experience.
I’m not talking about just sex because intimacy is not just sex it’s actually a small part of it. The one thing that hurts the most to miss about a relationship is the cuddling and embrace of another both physically and mentally. If this is the only thing I miss, how Can I believe in the old style relationship? If I was to believe then I should miss so much more! Resilience, someone doing forms ect. I don’t miss that because I do all of that.
A situationship is what I want. A situationship is not “friends with benefits” and can be monogamous. It’s a situation where both people get what they need without the nonsensical bravado and limitations a “relationship” puts on us.
I love! LOVE and want it and breathe it. I can have it and have had it but it doesn’t need to be forced in to an old fashioned form. Seeing each other when you can/want to enjoy one another’s company and bodies is fine. Not asking about the past, is fine! Believing in that persons ability and not judging what they can’t be for you, is FINE!
One person cannot save you because you’ve more than likely already saved yourself. Looking in to my romantic life I know that a situationship will make me much happier than a relationship.