As someone who has been entangled in many of these unfortunate “We’re together, but without the title” scenarios, let me tell you, they are not worth it. Here are 6 reasons why:
1. It usually ends with a very awkward pseudo-break-up.
I was dating this actor once (my first mistake), and thought we were on the road to getting serious. We had been seeing one another for several months, and in my head, all signs were pointing towards us one day owning monogrammed towels. After awhile, and at his request, I came to one of his shows — a show in which one of his props was a large cardboard cutout…of himself. Once the show ended, I patiently waited for him in the lobby. Another guy approached me, and struck up casual conversation. Apparently pseudo-boyfriend thought this was a no-no, because when he arrived (holding his cardboard twin), he was pissed. We walked into the street where he proceeded to tell me, while standing there with his cutout, “I just don’t think this is a good idea anymore.” Yes. In the middle of Gramercy, in the rain and with multiple onlookers, I was broken up with by a stunted actor and his fucking cardboard face. To say I was mortified is probably an understatement.
2. Your friends are afraid to be honest with you.
It’s funny, because I find when someone is in an actual relationship, her friends have no problem dishing honest opinions about her significant other. When you’re in a pseudo-relationship, however, they want to be supportive of your fragile feelings, and don’t quite know how to be straight with you. Sure, they’ll meet you for drinks and listen to you wail about some indecipherable text, but they’re really just tuning you out and doubling up on vodka. All they want is to tell you to put your big-girl-panties on, but they can’t. They don’t want to alienate or upset you, but they also don’t want to enable your delusions about some lame dude. Help them, and help yourself. Put ‘dem big-girl-panties on! You and your friends have better things to talk about.
3. You lose your ability to accept reality.
When I was in college, I was seeing this particular gentleman, who once turned to me and said, “You know this is never going to be anything, right?” To which I nonchalantly replied, “Oh yeah, totally, no problem.” WHAT. It was absolutely going to be a problem. We proceeded to hang out for months after that, leaving me to mistakenly believe that his original admission was just erroneous — like what a kidder, that guy — but, no. He was as serious as Ann Coulter talking about Clinton. I of course suffered an inevitable heartbreak, and it was my own fault. Please do not let this happen to you. If a guy can’t appreciate how fabulous you are right off the bat, don’t think you can change his opinion. Just run from him as fast as possible, because living in the land of delusions is a horrible place to reside.
4. You lower your standards.
Unfortunately, when you are desperately trying to win the “girlfriend” title, you will place way too much emphasis on his small gestures towards you. For example, I had a pseudo-boyfriend who bought me coffee once. He didn’t call or return my texts for weeks after that, but I held onto that damn coffee like it was freaking Excalibur. I thought, “Well…he has to call eventually…he bought me that coffee, so…” No, girl. Just no. It’s coffee, not a kidney. If he isn’t getting in touch with you, take the latte as a parting gift, and move on!
5. Your taste in music might suffer.
I listened to Kings of Leon with this guy I casually dated (but was totally into) pretty much every time we hung out. When he called things off, the band was ruined for me. To this day, I can never listen to the song, “Use Somebody” without getting exceedingly uncomfortable. Essentially, your taste in music is sacred. Only share your favorite records with valued friends or guys worthy enough to break your heart.
6. You forget how fucking cool you are!
This is the most important point. Don’t let some pseudo-whatever-moron make you feel like you aren’t good enough, because you are. Don’t ever let a blip on your relationship radar determine your self-worth. Because ladies, in the great words of Queen-Bey, we flawless.