It’s hard to find someone out there; even if you do, it’s hard to to commit. Dating apps make it seem like there’s always someone better out there, and you can just keep swiping until your thumb falls off or you find them—the best person! Or are they? Keep swiping!

We have all responded to technology’s invasion of romance in different ways. There’s lots of ghosting, orbiting, haunting. People creep on your Insta feed, but don’t reply to texts. If you’ve been out there, you know how confusing some of these interactions can get.

From this turmoil, a new dating trend has arisen: the situationship. What is that? It’s when you’re basically in a relationship with someone, but they don’t want to call it a relationship. Or maybe it’s you who is afraid to put a label on it.

But a debate has broken out over the legitimacy of this trend on Twitter, following the publication of a post by a woman named Raeven Bostic for xoNecole, who claims to be in her third year of a situationship.

Bostic writes that she ended an unhappy relationship, and started messaging an old friend on Twitter. They live a few hours away from one another, and when feelings started to surface, they decided to try dating. But he didn’t want it to be a relationship, because of the distance.

Three years later, and Bostic says she’s very happy in her situationship. They’re not boyfriend and girlfriend, they just hang out once or twice a month, talk on Facetime most days, text, plan special outings, and go to each other’s homes on holidays. But don’t call it a relationship!

She says it suits her right now, writing:

“Dating society has placed this stigma on women especially, that if you and a potential partner aren’t mutually exclusive after dating for four to six months, then your time is being wasted and you should move on to the next. Society frowns upon situationships because usually for the woman, she gets nothing in return.”

Bostic isn’t sure if this situationship is the situation she wants to be in forever; she’s feeling it out. Meanwhile, lots of people have feelings about her lifestyle choice.

Relationship guru @Imani_Yvonne went off on the concept of situationships on Twitter

It’s true that not every woman wants a relationship, but if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, call it a duck, ya know what I mean?

Many seem to think the situationship label is a get out of jail free card for when you’re really in a relationship, and reaping all the benefits of that relationship, but want to be able to bail whenever it’s inconvenient.

But other people are supportive of the idea, and Bostic. If it’s making her happy, what’s the problem?

It does seem silly to spend time trashing what other people are doing in their lives, but if you write an article about it, folks will have opinions.

Have you ever been in a situationship? And more importantly, did you know that’s what was happening?

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