If you’re anywhere hanging out with Gen Z, you might have heard of the term “situationship” — one of Oxford Dictionary’s finalists for the 2023 Word of the Year (only beaten out by “rizz”). All the cool cats around the block have ditched old-fashioned “relationships” to have a roster of reliable situationships on deck. But inquiring minds want to know: what does the term actually mean and how can I get into this arrangement before I look like a total square? Truly, it’s the modern day way of looking at romance and dating. If you’ve wanted some fine arm candy but weren’t ready to handle those pesky things like “labels” or “commitment,” a situationship is perfect for you. Besides, you’re a busy college student, no human can tie you down in the prime of your life! Just follow my simple guide for navigating the SS Situationship, and you too will be cruising into Valentine’s season like a pro.

Scoping Out a Partner

You can’t be in a situationship by yourself, can you? It takes two to tango, and finding your perfect dance partner is a crucial first step. The ideal place to find them is somewhere you don’t frequent too often, just in case things go south. Maybe the mysterious guy in your history class or a quirky gal from a dating app.

Some folks say you should date someone with a great personality, but ignore that advice for now, it’s for when you’re 30 and desperate. Remember, the focus is on physical features, not building a real connection. The goal here is someone who’s attractive enough to make your eyes pop out of your head and have you shout “AWOOGA,” and is also emotionally unavailable so there’s no risk of them catching feelings. That could be a disaster. At the very least, go for someone you can tolerate, but not too much.

Sailing the Waters of Non-Commitment

Congrats! You’ve found someone who’s actually willing to go out with you without ever wanting to actually deal with something long-term. Knew you could do it, you sly dog. Now, situationship partners can be skittish, like small animals. Keep dates light and fun at first: video games at your place or window-shopping at the mall. You’re not bringing them to Sunday brunch at your parent’s house for God’s sake. And remember to avoid labels at ALL COSTS.

If this goes on long enough, you’re going to reach a point where you should get some additional benefits out of this. After all, you’ll need support during particularly hectic weeks, or want to vent about how it’s so hard to find parking for a noon class. And hey, if your friends are busy and you don’t have any fulfilling hobbies besides scrolling on your phone all day, be sure to go on frequent dates with your situationship partner to avoid boredom. Eh, maybe they can even meet a distant family member, like your weird uncle.

You might read this and think to yourself, “Golly, isn’t this sort of like a normal relationship?” And that’s where you’re wrong! Remember the rules, no labels! Labels are for soup cans, not rocking studs like yourself.

Trouble on the High Seas

So, your situationship is getting rocky as you sail against the wind. You’ve reached a point where they’re taking longer and longer to text back, they seem less enthused during mall dates, or they even admit that they didn’t like meeting your weird uncle Steve. Well hey, look, don’t blame me. What exactly did you think was going to happen, huh? You wanted to be a modern dater and fit in with the cool kids, so you need to deal with a little bit of “hot and cold” from time to time. They’re not that great anyway. God, their constant texts were getting so annoying. And now you have more free time to yourself. Mirror their actions a bit and lay off. Besides, it’s not like you’ve caught any feelings, right?

Abandon Ship

Haha, okay, looks like your situationship partner has decided to “end things” because they’re just “so busy.” Maybe you thought you’d have to be the one to cut things off, so it’s a bit of a blow to the ego, but it’s the same result in the end anyway. You and that person? You were never going to make it in the long run. It’s for the best. And they were never your anything, so why miss them?

Still, it was nice to have someone to talk to everyday. Or to go check out new places with. Or even to share all your hopes and dreams with. Did they actually care during those conversations? Never mind that. If for some crazy reason you do miss them, remember this cardinal rule: they always come back. And, wait a minute — did they just follow someone new on social media?


Oh no. Your ex-situationship just posted a pic of them holding hands with someone cute. They never did that with you. This isn’t right. Where’s the dignity? Where’s the decorum? I mean, it’s not like you got emotionally attached to them or anything, it’s just… can they really move on so fast? And they’re already in an “official” relationship? Why did they never ask you for that? Is there something wrong with you? This can’t be. To reassure yourself, make sure you go through their whole social media to see if you missed any hints of this happening. When was the moment they decided they could just drop you like you were nothing? Maybe even call their phone from anonymous numbers to see if another person picks up for them. You need answers and you need them now!

Rowing Back to Shore

Situationships are…not for the weak. It was never easy trying to be an emotionally distant lone wolf in this world, especially when your brain chemicals are constantly trying to attack you and make you think you might actually love someone. Yuck! Regardless, nothing worth doing in life comes easy. So pick yourself up, forget about any jerk who could ignore someone as unforgettable as you, and find yourself another low-commitment partner. You can do a lot better, and you need someone to help you forget the last situationship anyway!