Donnacha and I matched on Ello.ie a new Irish dating App (yes, it’s free with no catches). Despite feeling a little cautious, I was excited about the match.
Donnacha ticked a lot of important boxes for me: slightly older (6 years), with a stable job (as a solicitor), and decent skills maintaining a conversation.
He knew how to balance communication and silence. He didn’t hound me with messages throughout the day, nor did he completely disappear for a few days until I was forced to ask what happened.
When we went out for the first time, I could tell we were at the start of something special. We had chemistry, that was undeniable. We got along so well, it felt like it was only a matter of time before we became an official couple.
Or so I thought……
Around three months after we started seeing each other, things were still as undefined as ever.
We’d see each other often enough, spend plenty of time together, then go on to barely exchange a few words in the following couple of days.
All our plans, however, were made no more than a day in advance, or even on the same day.
There were no “next week” plans, much less any “next month” plans. I wasn’t invited to anything involving his family, even though we were “together” going on four months.
One of his “best friends” had a birthday party and I wasn’t even invited — but I saw the pictures on Instagram afterward (how awkward).
All his buddies were there, most of them had their girlfriends, but I had to watch it all from afar instead of taking part in it.
I also noticed Donnacha didn’t come to me whenever he was stressed or overwhelmed.
He would cancel plans with me last minute explaining he had had a busy day and needed to unwind… “alone”.
That would frustrate me since I thought we had been seeing each other long enough for him to start thinking of me as a source of comfort in trying times, not as someone to avoid whenever he wasn’t feeling his best.
I felt he didn’t have to impress me or win me over every time an that he could be himself with me, in good times and in bad times alike, but he didn’t seem to have the same feelings.
It came to a point where I had to face the simple fact that what I had was a “Situationship” not a “relationship”— and that wasn’t working for me at all.
I had one choice: to make my feelings and intentions clear, I wanted more than to be in an undefined situation, and he needed to know that.
Based on his behavior, I had very little hope he would suddenly turn around and decide to become my boyfriend, but I had to be honest — for my sake if not for his.
So in the end, things with Donnacha went about how I predicted (yawn).
He said “he wasn’t ready for a committed relationship”, WTF….. So we parted ways.
I just wanted to post this on Breakup.ie for the whole country to see and learn from this.
If you find yourself in a similar situation, here are the steps you can take to make things clear and set yourself free earlier and not waste your time on a loser who would just drag you on knowing that he is wasting your time:
#1. Spot and Recognise
Take a break from the passion, step back from your own emotional involvement and analyze what’s going on. Take a look at both your behavior and the other person’s. Do you recognize any of the tell-tale signs?
- Lack of long-term plans;
- A lot of last-minute dates and booty calls;
- No sign they intend to introduce you to their friends and family;
- No real emotional connection or intimacy beyond the physical (sex).
If these are all present, and they begin to form a pattern of behavior, then you’re definitely in a “Situationship” evaluate and get out.
#2. Feelings and Expectations
How do you feel about this “Situationship”?
Does it satisfy your need for physical satisfaction and emotional connection, or do you want more?
You might be happy with the way things are, and if that’s the case, recognising you’re in a “situationship” might bring you nothing more than reassurance that things are going your way.
Or you might notice your needs are not being met, and you want more.
You want to know if you two are on a path towards building something meaningful together or not.
You want to know that your emotional intimacy can only grow from there and that you can rely on each other to fulfill your emotional needs. If that’s the case, a “Situationship” is definitely not the right arrangement for you.
#3. Be Straight-up Honest
Honest communication is everything.
It can be tough to come up to someone and open up your heart.
It requires strength and vulnerability, but it’s much less painful than cultivating anxiety over what the other person might be thinking, or how they might react once you finally reveal your heart.
Let them know you’ve developed feelings for them and would like to pursue a serious relationship with them.
Let them know what you expect from that relationship if you expect exclusivity or not, and that you expect to become more intimate and closer sharing your lives with each other.
#4. Embrace the Outcome.
Gathering the courage to be honest is only the beginning. You must also gather the courage to accept the outcome, whatever it may be.
It’s possible the person you have feelings for reciprocates those feelings and accepts it’s time to make your relationship official, but it’s also equally possible they want to keep things casual, commitment-free and are not interested in becoming any more intimate than you already are. Be ready to accept that.
#5. Pursue the relationship you really want.
The worst part of being stuck in a “Situationship” is the time you waste on something undefined and unfulfilling.
While it’s fine to spend a few weeks to a couple of months “getting to know” someone with little expectations and no strings attached, letting that sort of thing go on indefinitely when what you want is a full relationship is simply a waste of your time.
Being honest about your expectations can only set you free, whether by evolving your status with the person you have feelings for, or going your separate ways.
Whatever happens, you can only gain. Even if you’re no longer with that person, you can only gain as you set yourself free to meet someone who’ll be a better match for you, someone who wants the same things out of a relationship as you do.
In the end, honesty is the best way to get the relationship you want and deserve, even if you have to move on to be with somebody else.