This is the era of keeping it casual and of never asking the person you’re seeing if they’re seeing anyone else, because, well, you don’t want them asking you the same thing in return. It’s a time when no one feels allowed to lay claim to anybody, and when the question, “So, what are we?” could mean somebody laughs in your face. But, with all that being said, people will carry on consistent and intimate interactions with the same person, and just never call it a relationship. That’s right: it’s the era of the “almost relationship.” Almost relationships are both wonderfully convenient, because you can do just about anything you want without being called a cheater, but also quite limiting because people snail along in terms of expressing their feelings or making any sort of commitment. So, are you stuck in “almost relationship” hell? Here are the signs.
He’ll want your support one day
Sometimes, this guy will turn to you as if you are his closest companion. After a really rough day, he’ll call and ask to come over. He’ll tell you all about the terrible events of the day and how it makes him feel. He’ll gush about how nobody makes him feel better the way you do. He’ll lay his head in your lap and be adorably needy. You know—the way a boyfriend can be.
Then “forget” to tell you important details
In spite of the fact that this guy treated you like his wifey/therapist two weeks ago, he will neglect to tell you about huge life changes for an inappropriately long time. He’ll mention, for example, in passing that he just bought a condo one town over. A month ago. So, sometimes he includes you in major events, and sometimes he doesn’t.
You’ll talk about going somewhere together
He’ll go into fantastical stories about all the things you two could do together if you ever went to the Bahamas or Paris together. He’ll tell you about the gorgeous sunset here or the food you’d love at this cute little café. It feels like you’re planning this trip…Why else would he say all this?
Then you’ll see on Instagram he just went without you
Not long after the guy talks to you about the hypothetical trip you could take together, you log onto Instagram to see that he is just on that trip. Now. Without you. He didn’t even mention he was going.
He’ll text you 12 times in a row
Sometimes he’ll get into these moods where it seems like he can’t get enough of your texts. He wants to share every thought he’s had and funny video he has seen that day. It’s like you’re best friends and lovers. He’ll use a lot of emojis. He’ll be quite flirty and even make a reference to missing you.
But he’ll go MIA for four days, and never explain why
But sometimes he just won’t reach out for several days and when he does, he doesn’t even acknowledge the lack of recent communication. If you ask where he’s been, he makes some passive aggressive joke about how you’re not his wife.
He jokes about being jealous
The guy has teased you about making him jealous, but he’s never been outright jealous. If you mention you’re hanging out with a male friend, he may joke that that friend better not hit on you. That being said, he’s never claimed this was a monogamous relationship. Or even a relationship.
You can travel together, but not post pics
You go on trips together, but post limited photos. You know, deep down, that you cannot post photos of the two of you kissing, or of any action that would imply you are in a committed relationship.
Seeing his family feels dirty and weird
He brings you around his family but doesn’t introduce you with any label. He doesn’t call you his friend, or his girlfriend—he just says, “This is so-and-so.” With that in mind, he is affectionate with you in front of his family. It all leaves you feeling a little dirty because you don’t want to get his parents’ hopes up that he’s found the one when you have no idea what this relationship even is.
He won’t deny or confirm other women
When you mention other women you’ve seen him out with, or outright ask him if he’s dating someone else, he becomes a master of riddles. He’ll come back at you with a question instead of an answer, or some vague quote about love that does not tell you anything. But one thing is for certain; he will not admit he is dating anyone else, nor does he feel the need to assure you is isn’t dating anyone else.
He complains about the single life on social media
Even though you travel together, you’ve met his parents, and you spend most nights together, you still find that this guy complains about “the single life” on social media.
He refers to you as “boo”
Ah “boo”—the most noncommittal label out there. You probably call your best friend, your favorite coworker and your dog boo, don’t you? And this guy you’re dating (or not dating?) knows that. So he can get away with calling you boo, making you feel like it’s a term of endearment, but never actually calling you his girlfriend.
He’ll make large gestures but is afraid of yours
He has surprised you at work with a picnic lunch and flowers, but when you just popped by his office to say a quick hello, he looked terrified. He has brought you soup when you were sick but won’t accept any help from you when he’s under the weather.
You’ve dog sat while he traveled with another woman
You’ve taken care of his dog or cat while he traveled, and then realized he was traveling with another woman. Now those are some confusing signals—he wants you to get close to his furry best friend but he’s still dating around?
You have to monitor your daydreaming
Overall, you find yourself monitoring, restricting and editing your thoughts about this guy. You won’t let your imagination get the best of you, or allow your thoughts to run off about the future and living together. You try to only think about this guy when you are with him.