10 Signs You Are In A Situationship And How To Deal With It

Find out whether you are in a situationship to determine the future of your relationship.

Reviewed by Rodolfo Parlati, Professional Life Coach Rodolfo Parlati Rodolfo ParlatiProfessional Life Coach facebook_iconlinkedin_iconyoutube_iconinsta_icon
Written by , Integrated MA, Certified Relationship Coach Sneha Tete Integrated MA, Certified Relationship Coach linkedin_icon Experience: 4 years
Edited by , MA (English) Subhrojyoti Mukherjee MA (English) linkedin_icon Experience: 4 years
Fact-checked by , MA Gracia Odile MA linkedin_icon Experience: 3 years
Last Updated on

The names of non-committed relationships have been evolving from time to time. After booty calls, friends with benefits, and many other names, the latest is a situationship. The trend of casual relationships has been on the rise over the years. The reason? Is it always the commitment-phobia?

So, what is a situationship? Is it a good idea to go ahead with it? Which one to choose between situationship and a relationship? In this article, we have answered all these questions and given a clear picture of non-committed relationships. Take a look!

What Is A Situationship?

What is a situationship
Image: IStock

Being in a situationship is all the rage now! Less than a relationship and more than a friendship, situationships are neither here nor there. People might be in situationships during the first few dates when they are just getting to know each other. However, many situationships last longer, with both sides preferring to go with the flow instead of putting a label on the relationship.

You must be wondering, “Isn’t that the same as being friends with benefits?” Well, when it comes to a situationship vs. friends with benefits, the difference lies in the fact that in the latter, the people involved have one strict policy, and that is not to develop any feelings for the other! In situationships, however, the boundaries are blurry, and feelings of romance are within reach. And that is where it gets tricky.

Signs that you are in a situationship are quite apparent. For example, if you are seeing someone but are confused about the status of commitment between you, you might be stuck in a situationship. Identifying the signs of a situationship is crucial for maintaining devotion and fidelity in a relationship. Head to the next section to know more about the signs that point towards a situationship.

10 Signs You Are In A Situationship

10 signs you are in a situationship
Image: IStock

Here are a few signs to help you figure out if you are in a situationship:

1. It Is A Relationship Without Labels

Non-committal relationships are never defined, and it is one of the prime situationship rules. Sure, you hang out and hook up, but that’s about it. If you have been seeing the person for a while but have not had the DTR (defining the relationship) talk, you might be in a situationship.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Couples in a situationship often do not delete their dating apps and are open to seeing other people as well.

2. You Are Not Consistent

Unlike the consistency of a relationship, where people meet more frequently over time, situationships are all about sporadic meetings. You may see each other regularly for a while and then not hear from them for weeks.

3. You Are Stuck

Relationships have milestones. From saying ‘I love you’ for the first time to celebrating anniversaries, the intimacy increases with time. You know their favorite café, and they know your favorite bookstore. However, in situationships, you are stuck in the same place. Walking away from a situationship may be the right thing if you are looking for something serious, but they are not.

4. You Are Not A Part Of Their Social Circle

When you spend time with them, it is just the two of you. Their friends and family do not know you exist, and you are practically single to your acquaintances. Neither of you has a date for important events like engagement or wedding, and you might even be seeing other people outside this little arrangement. At times, one of you may want something more, which is natural. If that is not the case for both parties, breaking up this situationship may be the best option.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Situationship couples often avoid taking pictures together as they lack the need to create memories. It is a transient affair and there’s a lack of proof that the relationship exists.

5. You Are Anxious And Confused

You are anxious and confused are signs of situationship
Image: IStock

While many people prefer situationships, it is normal to feel confused with the lack of direction it brings. You are supposed to be in it to enjoy yourself, and if it gives you anxiety, you are better off without it! No healthy relationship should stress you out. If they make you feel more anxious than secure, leaving a situationship is probably for the best.

6. Your Plans Are Last Minute

Unless you are in a long-distance situationship that requires planning, you do not make any plans before meeting them. In addition to not being with each other on important events, situationships also involve random texts that say, ‘You up?’ or ‘Can we meet?’ at odd hours. The lack of definite plans combined with vague answers confirms the relationship’s exclusivity.

7. Canceling Is Always On The Table

Here’s the situationship psychology: You can cancel on each other any time, no questions asked. You must understand that in a situationship, neither of you owes an explanation to the other. In a relationship, people always find an alternative to canceled plans. However, a situationship does not need it!

8. There Are No Dates

Sure, you meet each other often. However, you do not go on actual dates. While the usual dating process involves wooing each other, getting to know them, and taking time out for them, you skip all these steps in a situationship and are DTF from the beginning. Take our situationship advice; if you do not feel up for it, you can always consider breaking off a situationship.

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Do you think situationships can develop into long-lasting romantic relationships?

9. You Don’t Feel The Need To Talk

You may know where the person stays, maybe even the food they are allergic to or if they prefer mountains to beaches, but that is pretty much it! You would rather talk dirty than open up to them about your feelings. If that is the case for both of you and you are content with it, congratulations! You are in a fabulous situationship.

10. You Are Not A Part Of Their Future

If your questions are more like, ‘Do you want to have pizza or pasta for dinner?’ instead of ‘Do you want to get married sometime in the future?’, you are in a situationship. If what you have is not permanent, why do you need to talk about it? When you are in a situationship, you do not picture your future with the other.

These were some of the defining features of a situationship. Learn more about the rules in the next section.

Situationship Rules

Situationships demand a set of unspoken rules. First and foremost, honesty is key; both parties should openly discuss their expectations and intentions. It is important to respect each other’s feelings and ensure that no one feels taken for granted.
Secondly, keep the communication frequent, allowing for any concerns or changes in feelings to be addressed promptly. At the same time, ensure maintaining privacy as well, as situationships often lack the commitment of traditional relationships.
And, most importantly, prioritize personal growth and well-being. While situationships can be enjoyable and fulfilling, individuals should remain open to the possibility of evolving the relationship or transitioning to something more concrete if both parties desire.

Feelings are unpredictable, though. If you feel like you are falling for them and often imagine spending the future with them, you might want to talk about where you both stand. If you both feel commitment is the way forward, it is not difficult to turn a situationship into a relationship. Read on to know how to can achieve it.

Turning Situationship Into Relationship

Turning situationship into relationship
Image: IStock

Often, people prefer situationships to avoid the pressure of a relationship or simply because they are uncertain about what they feel about this partnership. A relationship, as traditionally intended, involves taking responsibility and providing support, companionship, and loyalty. And you cannot consider monogamy in a situationhip. This is what makes a difference. Situationships are much more manageable just because of the lack of responsibility. Everyone feels free to act with no clear restrictions and limitations. In the end, it works as a sort of “limbo”.

Upgrading a situationship to a relationship needs proper consideration. If you are catching feelings like affection or love for your partner or growing a connection with them, it is time for you to sit down and have the DTR talk to know your compatibility and ensure that you are on the same page. Even though it is highly likely that one of you is way ahead with their feelings than the other — in which case getting over a situationship is the only option — falling in lovein a situationship is not unheard of.

Many a time, people moving from situationship to relationship find happiness in commitment. Have an honest conversation and open communication with each other, and later give your partner time to think about what you said. You may feel anxious or even scared of losing what you have, but you must know that you deserve something you truly want, so just trust the process.

If you do not have a place in their future, it is better to focus on walking out of the situationship to avoid getting heartbroken. The next section discusses how you can keep your situationship going smoothly and when to contemplate hitting the breaks on it.

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Do you think societal norms influence people's decisions to be in a situationship?

How To Deal With A Situationship

How to deal with a situationship
Image: IStock

If you are okay with the current arrangement, it is fine. However, if you want something more, be clear about your feelings. We sometimes push our own needs aside to satisfy the other or maybe because we think they might change. Life is not a fairytale, and it is okay to consider how to fall back from a situationship if your wishes remain unfulfilled. In the end, it is your decision!

If you realize that you want different things, you should step out of the situationship before it gets toxic. You can talk to them in person, end things over a call, or drop a text. However, healing from a situationship may take time owing to the unresolved feelings you may harbor. It is crucial to understand how to move on from a situationship, especially if you were the one who wanted something more. Look at the situationship as a learning experience and be careful before agreeing to something similar again.

L.J. Rose, a blogger, shares her five-month “situationship” with Zach, reflecting on the lack of chemistry and communication. Despite enjoying the casual nature, growing feelings prompt a conversation, revealing Zach’s reluctance for seriousness. She mentioned, “I think what hurt the most was that he hadn’t thought about it at all. How do you date someone for five months and not think about where it’s going? I told Zach that I thought we should call it quits. I did want a relationship and if this wasn’t going anywhere, it was best to not waste each other’s time (i).” Ending the situationship, she emphasizes the importance of clear communication, trusting instincts, and being grateful for rejection.

Infographic: How To End A Situationship

A situationship might be the best bet for people who want to test the waters and do not want to get into anything serious. However, the chaotic limbo starts tipping more and more towards one side, creating a constantly toxic imbalance. There is a level of detachment in a situationship, but soon things start getting intense for the wrong reasons. When a casual and feel-good thing starts coming your way, it is best to end it. Check out the infographic below to know how to go about it.

how to end a situationship (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

A situationship is a bond that is less intimate than a relationship but more than a friendship. It is like testing the waters of a relationship without being in one. Moreover, a situationship is not the same as friends with benefits where emotional tie-ups are off the table. In a situationship, you are open to your emotional and physical needs without worrying about being in a relationship. Reading through the signs mentioned above should have given you a detailed understanding of whether you are in a situationship or not to help you assess the future of your bond.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long should you be in a situationship?

There is no defined timeline for a situationship. However, if the situationship becomes toxic and is not mutually beneficial anymore, then it is time you talk to the person and say your goodbyes.

Is a situationship toxic?

It does not necessarily have to be toxic. If both people are on the same page regarding the situationship, then it is fine. If the situationship leaves you confused, anxious, and changes you as a person, you might be in a toxic situationship.

Why do situationships hurt more?

Situationships are tricky and can result in feelings developing for the person. Even though it is not a full-fledged relationship, it can feel like one. When the situationship does not serve both people anymore and results in goodbyes, it is natural to feel really hurt and sad.

Key Takeaways

  • Situationships are non-committal romantic relationships where you haven’t defined your relationship and are doing it more for fun and convenience than for a long-term commitment.
  • You do not have a social circle with your partner, you tend to plan things at the last minute, and there are no dates when you express your feelings.
  • Changing a situationship into a serious affair is as easy as making a commitment, but if this relationship doesn’t work out, it’s easy to break it off.

Are you in a situationship or a real relationship? Get the answers you need with dating tips in the following video! Learn how to tell the difference and make the right decision.

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Rodolfo Parlati
Rodolfo ParlatiProfessional Life Coach
After having graduated in Business Administration, Rodolfo decided to follow his passion for supporting others by becoming a professional coach. Today, his mission is to help people be happy and successful by discovering their potential and finding together the right way to fully exploit it.

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Sneha Tete
Sneha TeteBeauty & Lifestyle Writer
Sneha has a master's degree in Applied Linguistics from the University of Hyderabad, a professional Relationship Coach diploma, and over four years of experience in writing. She writes about relationships and lifestyle.Sneha began her career as an instructional designer, shifted to freelance technical and research writing, and self-published a novella on the theme of adolescent mental health.

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Subhrojyoti Mukherjee
Subhrojyoti MukherjeeAssociate Editor
Subhrojyoti is an associate editor at StyleCraze with four years of experience. He has a master’s degree in English from Presidency University, Kolkata, and has also done a post-graduate certificate course in Editing and Publishing from Jadavpur University, Kolkata.

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Gracia Odile
Gracia OdileBeauty & Lifestyle Writer
Gracia Odile is a teacher-turned-beauty and lifestyle writer with three years of professional experience. She has a bachelor's degree in English from St. Stephen's College, a master's in Anthropology from the University of Madras, and a degree in education from GGSIPU.

Read full bio of Gracia Odile