Playing Pretend: A Relationship Masquerade

Jenn Press

There is a current wave of relationships: the uncommitted commitment, that seems to have so many perks and so many complications all at the same time. This dance around emotion is a way for people with feelings and attraction for one another to assume words and actions of a couple without the true responsibility of a title. It’s a fine line between full-on relationship and no strings attached.

Communication is key in this ordeal because it’s possible to be on the same page, different book. There are only certain parts of a ‘real’ relationship included in this package and it’s vital you both know what comes with the situation and what’s extra. For example, you may decide you are comfortable cuddling in public, but no hand holding, or you’ll hook up and spend the night together, but won’t kiss goodbye.

While you may adapt to your rules, the constant phone time, enjoyable group partying and even special one-on-one moments can confuse even the most level-headed participant. While it seems to everyone around that you are in fact taken, the small cracks of this not-so-cemented sentiment can leave a lot falling through, including true emotion.

I mean, technically you could be dating or hooking up with other people, but in most cases you are faithful to one another unless something monumental comes along. And in this case, you can attack it guilt free because you are, on some level, available.

It’s like a traffic light. In a matter of moments it can change from go to slow to stop right there, and you can never be so sure whether or not you’ll have to pull over all together.

These semi-relationships seem ideal for those who feel this is the definition of having it all. While some are more comfortable in a one and only, others are more suited for a one only for now. These pseudo relationships are appropriate for commitment phobes: those who’ve been way too hurt to actually consider themselves coupled, or those trying someone on for size only to wear them around for a bit until a possible better match comes along. In some cases one may even wake up and realize they’ve found a perfect fit after all.

Companionship is one thing everyone craves at some point regardless of sexual preference. But there comes a point when we must step it up a notch, and we desire a little more than sharing a TV remote. We want passion, great conversation, someone to run stupid errands with us, and yes, eventually, we want love.

But, to those who are only able to admit to companionship, a pseudo relationship fits perfectly into any schedule. You can practice what it’s like to really date the person, but don’t have to worry so much about ‘messing up.’

After a while, however, something’s got to give. I mean, who are you kidding anyway? Clearly there are feelings there. And if you don’t make yourself a couple, isn’t that kind of offensive when after so much time, neither of you are interested enough to commit?

In this game of hearts, are there really any winners?