As Taylor Swift reveals her heartbreak after two-week romance with Matty Healy in new album, psychologist reveals why ‘situationships’ can be more heartbreaking than long-term splits

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Written By Maya Cantina
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Millions of Taylor Swift fans were across the world were bracing themselves on Friday morning to listen to – what they expected to be – a heart-wrenching break-up album about her six-year relationship with British actor Joe Alwyn.

Instead, Swifties were greeted with a 31-track magnum opus, with many tracks about Matty Healy.  

The 1975 frontman, 35, is thought to be the subject of lead single Fortnight, title track The Tortured Poets Department as well as Fresh Out The Slammer and various other bops.

Healy, son of Loose Woman Denise Welch, enjoyed a two-week romance with the 14-time Grammy winner after her break-up from Alwyn.

Many fans have been left shocked that the situtionship – a romantic or sexual relationship that is not considered to be formal or established- has caused more agonising tracks than her long-term romance with Joe.

Millions of Taylor Swift fans were across the world were bracing themselves on Friday morning to listen to – what they expected to be – a heart-wrenching break-up album about her six-year relationship with British actor Joe Alwyn . Instead, Swifties were greeted with a 31-track magnum opus, with many tracks about Matty Healy

Taylor Swift officially dropped The Tortured Poets Department on Friday - her hotly-anticipated 11th studio album

Taylor Swift officially dropped The Tortured Poets Department on Friday – her hotly-anticipated 11th studio album 

Healy is hardly the first of Taylor’s short-term flames to become a long-term muse. Two of her fan favourites Red and 1989 are about short relationships with Jake Gyllenhaal and Harry Styles respectively.

Meanwhile, her longest relationships, with Alwyn and Scottish DJ Calvin Harris have produced much less heartbreak.

Situationships are much harder to get over, according to various relationship experts.

‘Situationships are harder to get over because there is usually no clear beginning and the nature of the situation is ambiguous. 

‘That feels hard for our brain to categorise and to process,’ Courtney Boyer Sex and Relationship Expert told Femail.

‘We like labels. Definitions. Black and white. Predictability. Unknowns and uncertainties are harder to process. 

‘And there’s still the hope that something could evolve because nothing was defined in the first place’.

Taylor with ex-boyfriend Joe Alwyn

Taylor with ex-boyfriend Joe Alwyn

Taylor Swift’s The Tortured Poets Department full tracklist and meanings: How singer’s lyrics reflect on her ill-fated romances and reignite bitter feud in most personal album yet 

Fortnight (feat. Post Malone) 

Taylor appears to reference the end of her relationship with Joe Alwyn and her subsequent fling with Matty Healy in the first track on her album. 

The first verse appears to hint at the end of her romance with Joe as she sings: I was supposed to be sent away but they forgot to come and get me. 

Taylor then wishes an ex well who betrayed her: All of this to say, I hope you’re okay, but you’re the reason / No one here’s to blame but what about your quiet treason.

In the second verse, Taylor talks about a short-lived fling that helped her ‘move on’, potentially a reference to Matt. 

She sings: ‘All my mornings are Mondays stuck in an endless February / I took the miracle move on drug and the effects were temporary / And I love you, it’s ruining my life / I touched you for only a fortnight.’

The Tortured Poets Department

The titular track is a shimmering melody which suggest that Taylor, modestly, doesn’t see herself at the top table of tortured poets: ‘You’re not Dylan Thomas, and I’m not Patti Smith.’

It also appears to heavily reference her fling with Matty as she sings: ‘You smok¿d then ate seven bars of chocolate / We declared Charlie Puth should be a bigger artist.

‘I scratch your head, you fall asleep / Like a tattooed golden retriever / But you awaken with dread.’ 

She also makes a candid reference to her mental health, singing: ‘But you told Lucy you’d kill yourself if I ever leave /And I had said that to Jack about you so I felt seen’. 

My Boy Only Breaks His Favorite Toys

Written solely by Taylor, this song’s dense electronic hum adds forceful notes. 

Fans have suggested the title is a reference to the ‘shiny toy she sang about in her hit Cruel Summer from the album Lover. 

It’s not clear if she is referring to heartbreak after splitting from Joe or the abrupt end to her romance with Matty. 

‘Once I fix me, he’s gonna miss me,’ she vows, adding: ‘I know I’m just repeating mys¿lf Put me back on my shelf / But first, pull the string And I’ll tell you that he runs Because he loves me (He loves me).’

Down Bad

Taylor references mental health again as she details how ‘down’ she feels without an ex and the infatuation she felt with him.

‘Everything comes out teenage petulance,’ sings Taylor as she bitterly surveys the fallout from an old relationship.

She continues: ‘Everything comes out teenage petulance / F**k it if I can’t have him / I might just die, it would make no difference / Down bad, waking up in blood /Staring at the sky, come back and pick me up.

‘F**k it if I can’t have us / I might just not get up / I might stay down bad.’

So Long, London

The first track to be written with The National’s Aaron Dessner brings a change of pace, with a lovely, choral intro. ‘So long, London, you’ll find someone,’ sings Taylor.

The song appears to be a reference to British ex Joe and a follow up to her hit London Boy from Lover. 

She references their different approaches to the end of their romance, singing in the first verse: ‘I kept calm and carried the weight of the rift / Pulled him in tighter each time he was drifting away / My spine split from carrying us up the hill.’ 

Verse three she muses: ‘And you say I abandoned the ship, but I was going down with it / My white knuckle dying grip holding tight to your quiet resentment.’ 

But Daddy I Love Him

‘I know he’s crazy, but he’s the one I want,’ sings Taylor, showing wry humour as she admits to falling for the bad boys. Produced, with real brightness, by Dessner.

She goes on to revel in the fact she dismisses warning from critics, singing: ‘They slammed the door on my whole world / The one thing I wanted

‘Now I¿m running with my dress unbuttoned, / Screaming, But daddy I love him / I¿m having his baby / No I¿m not, but you should see your faces.’ 

Fresh Out The Slammer

Finger-picked acoustic guitar adds folky notes reminiscent of lockdown albums Folklore and Evermore to Fresh Out The Slammer, which details rushing into a new relationship. 

Seemingly a reference to her fling with Matty – who she previously dated in 2015 – she sings: ‘Now pretty baby, I¿m running back home to you. / Fresh out the slammer I know who my first call will be to.’ 

On the decay of her past relationship, she sings: ‘Splintered back in winter, silent dinners, bitter he was with her in dreams / Gray and blue and fights and tunnels, handcuffed to the spell I was under.

‘For just one hour of sunshine / Years of labor, locks and ceilings / In the shade of how he was feeling.’

Florida!!! (feat. Florence + The Machine)

An album highlight, this theatrical duet with London singer Florence Welch is an uplifting song of escape ¿ from small-town life and a bad romance.

Tellingly the first tour stop following her split from Joe was in Tampa, Florida and she begins her song by singing: ‘You can beat the heat if you beat the charges too. 

‘They said I was a cheat, I guess it must be true / And my friends all smell like weed or little babies / And this city reeks of driving myself crazy.’

This is her first new album since the end of her six-year relationship with British actor Joe Alwyn and, while she doesn't mention Alwyn by name, speculation will be rife that tracks such as So Long, London are about him. Pictured together in 2019

This is her first new album since the end of her six-year relationship with British actor Joe Alwyn and, while she doesn’t mention Alwyn by name, speculation will be rife that tracks such as So Long, London are about him. Pictured together in 2019

Guilty As Sin?

A tale of unrequited love, and a superb slice of 1980s-style soft rock. It even mentions The Downtown Lights, a 1989 single by Scottish band The Blue Nile.

She begins the track with her feelings on being ‘trapped’ in a relationship, singing: ‘My boredom¿s bone-deep, this cage was once just fine / Am I allowed to cry? 

‘I dream of cracking locks, throwing my life to the wolves or the ocean rocks.’

She hints at an emotional affair providing her release, singing: ‘These fatal fantasies giving way to labored breath taking all of me we¿ve already done it in my head. 

‘If it¿s make-believe why does it feel like a vow we¿ll both uphold somehow?¿’

Who’s Afraid Of Little Old Me?

Big drums, a dramatic arrangement, and more dry humour in another song penned solely by Taylor. ‘You wouldn’t last an hour in the asylum where they raised me,’ she snarls.

It’s reminiscent of her hit single Look What You Made Me Do and the villain arc is prominent in her lyrics. 

She sings: ‘I was tame, I was gentle till the circus life made me mean /Don¿t you worry folks, we took out all her teeth

‘Who¿s afraid of little old me? Well you should be.’

I Can Fix Him (No Really I Can)

A moody, stripped-down number worthy of Lana Del Rey, who has also worked extensively with the song’s producer, Jack Antonoff.

She appears to be referring to chain smoking, booze loving Matty, as she sings: ‘The smoke cloud billows out his mouth like a freight train through a small town / The jokes that he told across the bar were revolting and far too loud.’

Fans had expressed their concerns when Taylor started dating The 1975 bad boy rocker and it seems her friends had the same reservations. 

Taylor sings:  ‘They shake their heads, saying, “God help her” when I tell ¿em he¿s my man / But your good Lord doesn¿t need to lift a finger / I can fix him, no really I can / And only I can.’ 

The Alchemy: Sporting metaphors aplenty suggest a track inspired by the singer's current boyfriend, American football star Travis Kelce. Pictured at Coachella this week

The Alchemy: Sporting metaphors aplenty suggest a track inspired by the singer’s current boyfriend, American football star Travis Kelce. Pictured at Coachella this week

loml

‘You said I’m the love of your life,’ sings Taylor on this warm, resonant piano ballad. In a smart twist, the ‘loml’ ultimately becomes ‘the loss of my life’.

She describes being love-bombed by an old flame, seemingly referring to Matty given their past experience. 

Others have suggested the intensity of the lyrics suggest it relates to her longterm relationship with Joe. 

She sings: ‘I felt a glow like this, never before and never since /If you know it in one glimpse it¿s legendary.

‘You and I go from one kiss to getting married / Still alive, killing time at the cemetery / Never quite buried.’ 

I Can Do It With A Broken Heart

More 1980s influences on an electronic pop track that sees Taylor vowing to remain a trouper, despite any romantic strife.

She sings about putting on a brave face while her relationships publicly fall apart, noting: ‘They said, “Babe, you gotta fake it till you make it,” and I did.

‘Lights, camera, b***h, smile / Even when you wanna die / He said he’d love me all his life / But that life was too short / Breaking down, I hit the floor / All the pieces of me shattered as the crowd was chanting more.’  

Taylor has previously admitted she struggled with her love live playing out so publicly and the narrative that she’d had more boyfriends than other women.  

The Smallest Man Who Ever Lived

‘You didn’t measure up in any measure of a man,’ sings a disdainful Taylor on a melodramatic ballad.

The title is noteworthy, given that Matty’s stature is an object of some debate. The singer previously disclosed: ‘Everyone in [the 1975] is 6¿4¿ and I¿m 5¿10¿, so everyone thinks that I¿m 5¿5¿.’

More recently, he addressed these short man allegations by telling a fan that he was ‘sick to f***ing death of this’, insisting that he is ‘a big boy.’

She sings: ‘And I don¿t miss what we had / But could someone give a message / To the smallest man who ever lived?’

The Alchemy

Not all the songs are about heartbreak, as sporting metaphors aplenty suggest a track inspired by the singer’s current boyfriend, American football star Travis Kelce. 

‘When I touch down, call the amateurs and cut them from the team,’ she sings.

Speaking about the upcoming release back in February, when he was building up to the Super Bowl in Las Vegas, Kelce said he had heard some of the songs on Taylor’s latest release.

‘I have heard some of it and yes, it’s unbelievable,’ he said to reporters. ‘I can’t wait for her to shake up the world when it finally drops.’

Clara Bow

It’s tempting to think Taylor sees something of herself in a closing track inspired by Clara an American actress of the 1920s who lived her life in the Hollywood goldfish bowl.

She goes on to reference Stevie Nicks as she details struggling with the trappings  of fame. 

Taylor sings: ‘I’m not trying to exagg¿rate / But I think I might die if I made it, die if I made it / No one in my small town thought I’d meet these suits in LA / They all want to say.’ 

The Black Dog 

The Black Dog is also a reference to depression and lack of energy based on a demonic hellhound acting as an omen of death in English folklore and literature. 

As well as the eerie lyrical meaning to the title, The Black Dog is a bar in Vauxhall, London – her ex Matt’s city of birth and just a stone’s throw away from Joe’s hometown of Royal Tunbridge Wells in Kent. 

In the song, she belts out: ‘I am someone who until recent events you shared your secrets with and your location / you forgot to turn it off / And so I watch as you walk into some bar called The Black Dog…

‘I just don’t understand how you don’t miss me in The Black Dog when someone plays The Starting Line and you jump up, but she’s too young to know this song that was intertwined in the magic fabric of our dreaming.’ 

Imgonnagetyouback

Taylor is torn between calling things off for good or rekindling with an ex in imgonnagetyouback.

Emotions are clearly running high as she sings: ¿Whether Im gonna be your wife / Or smash up your bike / I haven¿t decided yet¿.

She appears to reference her new romance with Travis as the song goes on, sharing: ‘I can feel it coming / In the way you move / Push the reset button /We¿re becoming something new.

‘See you got somebody else / Say I got someone else too / Even if it¿s him, I’m leaving here with you.’ 

The Albatross

It seems London watering holes are a theme of the album, with The Black Dog and The Bolter joining The Albatross as apparent references to venues. 

The Albatross Club is a pub in Farringdon, London but also has particularly eerie significance in its meaning as a word alone. 

Albatross is defined in the Britannica Dictionary as: ‘A continuing problem that makes it difficult or impossible to do or achieve something. Fame has become an albatross that prevents her from leading a normal and happy life.’

Additionally, an albatross is a large white ocean bird that has very long and often black wings – which many likened to her outfit from the Grammys. 

Taylor is taking no prisoners in this track, referring to herself as one of the largest seabirds on Earth – famed for their giant wingspan and ability to glide seamlessly. 

She sings about taking revenge with the lyrics: ‘She is here to destroy you/ Devils that you know / Raise worse hell than a stranger’. 

Taylor Swift has reignited her explosive feud with Kim Kardashian by releasing a diss track aimed at the reality star (pictured with Kim in 2015)

Taylor Swift has reignited her explosive feud with Kim Kardashian by releasing a diss track aimed at the reality star (pictured with Kim in 2015)

Taylor also seems to reference Kim's 10-year-old daughter North West dancing to Shake It Off on TikTok back in January, she writes:# your kid comes home singin' a song that only us two is gonna know is about you'

Taylor also seems to reference Kim’s 10-year-old daughter North West dancing to Shake It Off on TikTok back in January, she writes:# your kid comes home singin’ a song that only us two is gonna know is about you’

Chloe or Sam or Sophia or Marcus

Taylor tells the story of a rocky relationship in which their partner betrays them and focuses on drugs more than her. 

She hints at infidelity on their part by singing: ‘Your hologram stumbled into my apartment / Hands in the hair of somebody in darkness /Named Chloe or Sam or Sophia or Marcus / And I just watched it happen / As the decade would play us for fools.’ 

Taylor goes on to reference, singing: ‘You said some things that I can¿t unabsorb / You turned me into an idea of sorts / You needed me, but you needed drugs more / And I couldn¿t watch it happen.’

How Did It End? 

Taylor appears to reference the speculation over her relationship with Joe Alwyn as she details in the chorus: 

‘Come one come all It’s happ’nin’ again / The empathetic hunger descends We’ll tell no-one / ‘Cept all of our friends / We must know How did it end?’ 

So High School

While many tracks are bold aims at her exes Matt and Joe, happiness does reign in her track So High School where she discusses current boyfriend Travis. 

She sings: ‘You know how to ball, I know Aristotle, brand new, full throttle // Touch me while your bros play Grand Theft Auto // It’s true, swear, scouts honor // You knew what you wanted, and, boy, you got her.’

Taylor the directly references a resurfaced video in which Travis was asked who marry, kiss or kill between Ariana Grande, Katy Perry and Taylor. 

She sings: ‘Are you gonna marry, kiss or kill me? Kill me. It’s just a game, but really, really, I’m betting on all three for us two. 

The Bolter 

Fans have made many interpretations of The Bolter – with links to a London pub in the form of Mansion House’s bar of the same name while also alluding to a suitor running into the night – something fans insisted was about Joe. 

Some Twitter users claimed the location is where the former couple enjoyed their first date – yet the claims were quickly disputed by devoted followers.

The initial claim came from a fan writing: ‘The Bolter is a bar in London where Taylor and Joe went on their first outing?!?!???? I¿m done, BYE’. 

Others followed up writing: ‘***Apparently that¿s not the bar they were publicly first seen together!!!!*** But there is indeed this bar in London which is crazy anyway… guys it’s not real, it was different place’. 

She sings: ‘Started with a kiss // “Oh, we must stop meeting like this” // But it always ends with a town car speeding // Out the drive one evenin’ // Ended with the slam of a door // But she’s got the best stories // You can be sure…

‘All her fuckin’ lives // Flashed before her eyes // And she realized // It feels like the time // She fell through the ice // Then came out alive’.

thanK you aIMee 

Fans are convinced the 24th track – thanK you aIMee – is aimed at Kim Kardashian, as the letters K,I and M are capped up to spell out her name.

Taylor sings in one line: ‘There’s a bronze spray-tanned statue of you and a plaque underneath it/That threatens to push me down the stairs, at our school.’

‘All that time you were throwin’ punches, I was buildin’ somethin’ / And I can’t forgive the way you made me feel / Screamed ‘F**k you, Aimee’ to the night sky, as the blood was gushin’ / But I can’t forget the way you made me heal.’

She goes on to add: ‘And it wasn’t a fair fight, or a clean kill / Each time that Aimee stomped across my grav¿ / And then she wrote h¿adlines/ In the local paper, laughing at each baby step I’d take.’

Taylor concludes by confirming she’s changed the name of the woman she’s singing about – further fuelling speculation the track is about Kim.

She also seems to reference Kim’s 10-year-old daughter North West dancing to her 2014 single Shake It Off on TikTok, finding it ironic as the ‘song is about you’.

She sings: ‘And so I changed your name, and any real defining clues/And one day, your kid comes home singin’ a song that only us two is gonna know is about you.’

The Bad Blood songstress, 34 – who recently teased a ‘timetable’ to her fans ahead of the LP’s release – initially announced the album while attending the 2024 Grammys earlier this year in February.

The title of her latest work had caused fans to speculate that the name was aimed at her ex, Joe. 

As the album hit streaming platforms, Swift published a lengthy statement on Instagram where she described it as ‘an anthology of new works that reflect events, opinions and sentiments from a fleeting and fatalistic moment in time – one that was both sensational and sorrowful in equal measure.’ 

She continued: ‘This period of the author’s life is now over, the chapter closed and boarded up. There is nothing to avenge, no scores to settle once wounds have healed. And upon further reflection, a good number of them turned out to be self-inflicted.

‘This writer is of the firm belief that our tears become holy in the form of ink on a page. Once we have spoken our saddest story, we can be free of it.

‘And then all that’s left behind is the tortured poetry,’ concluded Swift, as she announced: ‘THE TORTURED POETS DEPARTMENT is out now.’

Hours later, Swift surprised fans by announcing it was a surprise double album.  

Despite already splashing out for multiple versions of the record in a bid to get their hands on all four bonus tracks, fans will have to part with even more hard-earned cash when the super-sized record goes on sale.

After releasing her new album at midnight ET (2am UK time), Taylor took to Instagram to announce her latest record was actually a surprise ‘double album,’ after sparking a flurry of speculation by posting a countdown clock on social media.

Captioning the post, Taylor told her followers that she’d written ‘so much tortured poetry in the past two years’ that she wanted to share it with her fans.

Sharing the double album was called The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology, she wrote: ‘It’s a 2am surprise: The Tortured Poets Department is a secret DOUBLE album. ¿¿ 

‘I’d written so much tortured poetry in the past 2 years and wanted to share it all with you, so here’s the second installment of TTPD: The Anthology. 15 extra songs. And now the story isn’t mine anymore¿ it’s all yours.’ 

While the deluxe version is not yet available for Taylor’s website, there were four different versions of the original album available, each containing a different bonus track, and priced at £13.99 ($17.38).

The vinyl version, including bonus track The Manuscript, costs £33.99 ($42.23), while a ‘phantom clear vinyl’ is price the same.

This means, that if Swifties were willing to splash out on every incarnation of the album, it’s already set them back over £140 ($174).

It remains to be seen how much more this new supersized version of the album, and its various vinyl counterparts, will cost.

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Marie Morice, Clinical Sexologist, added:  ‘Situationships can be extremely challenging to get over. 

People turn to Tinder for situationships… 

Tinder’s Global Relationships Expert, Paul C Brunson: ‘On Tinder we’ve seen from 2022 the notion of ‘situationship’ gaining more and more traction. Not quite a full-on relationship, but viewed as a great way to develop a relationship with less pressure. However, don’t make the mistake that getting over a ‘situationship’ will be easy. The reality is, all human connection, in whatever form, has the power to move us deeply and can mean when something doesn’t work out, it can be terribly sad.

With more traditional relationships we can feel we have the ‘right’ to grieve, to be sad and cry. But with situationships, they’re often deemed much more casual and insignificant, so that break-up process isn’t as validated. If you’ve come to the end of a situationship, know it is 100% natural to be upset so always give yourself the time to grieve and process however you need.

In this all-or-nothing era of dating – young singles aren’t afraid to put themselves out there and expect the same from their potential partners. They are prioritising qualities such as loyalty (79%), respect (78%) and open-mindedness (61%)*. The situationship won’t be going away any time soon, as it is firmly rooted in our dating journeys. Therefore, it should be treated the same as any other relationship which will have its natural ups and downs, and of course, ‘break ups’ too.’

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‘Their informal nature doesn’t usually lead to a clear communication about the “contract” between the different parties, often resulting in misaligned expectations and heartbreak. 

‘As a clinical sexologist, I’ve helped clients who were struggling with the aftermath of a situationship, usually women who got quickly attached. 

‘Casual sex needs to be debunked and talked about more so that we can get prepared for the possible emotional consequences.’

 Rychel Johnson, M.S., LCPC, a mental health expert and licensed clinical professional counsellor in Kansas, explained: ‘When there are no established boundaries or mutual understanding of what the relationship was, it leaves so much open to interpretation and questioning’.

‘Was it just casual dating? The start of something more serious that fizzled out? Were real feelings starting to develop before things abruptly ended? All of these unanswered questions make achieving emotional resolution an uphill battle.

‘Without any formality or agreed-upon terminology to define the situation, our minds are left to fill in the blanks based on our own insecurities and desires.

‘It’s this uncertainty that can prolong the grieving process and make letting go feel impossible at times. How can you fully move forward when you’re stuck replaying and reanalysing every interaction, text, and moment spent together looking for signs you may have missed….. the lack of clarity prevents creating the psychological distance needed to heal.

‘Additionally, situationships often condense so much intensity into a short period before flaming out. Built-up hopes, passion and emotional investment happen rapidly without the normal progression of commitment. 

‘So when they come to an abrupt halt, working through those heightened feelings of connection and fantasy can hit twice as hard.

‘My advice is to avoid these undefined blurred lines whenever possible. If keeping things casual is the mutual desire, establish upfront what that truly means for both parties. And if you start developing deeper feelings, have the courage to initiate an honest conversation about getting on the same page. 

 

Are you in a situationship? Expert reveals the seven signs…

Relationship expert at Chapter2, Nicky Wake, shares seven signs that could indicate you’re in a situationship. 

1. One of the primary indicators of a situationship is the absence of clear labels. Unlike committed relationships, where a partner defines their status as official or ‘off the market’, non-committal relationships lack definition.

In healthy relationships, partners will discuss the future together such as booking holidays or celebrating milestones. 

2. In a situationship, discussion about future events is notably absent. If conversations about long-term goals, such as meeting their social circle, are met with discomfort, awkwardness, and a shift in topics, without genuine reason, it could be a sign that your connection isn’t long-term but situational.

3. Everyone gets busy in their daily lives, but when you’re dating someone, you should be able to book time to see them

If you’re finding it hard to plan dates with your partner, and instead confirm only a day or a few hours before, you might be low on their priority list.

4. Situationships lack consistency, which can leave you feeling anxious, and unhappy. Effective communication is the backbone of any successful relationship. 

If your interactions are confined to sporadic texts or one-off meetups without meaningful conversations about emotions, you might be in a situationship.

5. Mutual emotional support is key to building a firm foundation together. This is especially important if you’re new to dating due to the loss of a partner. 

6. You need to look for someone who can help you navigate life’s challenges and be each other’s emotional anchor. If your partner is not compelled to provide the level of emotional support found in committed connections, it might be time to take a step back.

If you really like someone, you want to make time for them. In a situationship, you might hear frequent excuses in response to arranging meet-ups. This can cause upset and knock your self-esteem. Try to talk to your partner about your feelings towards this, and their response will help you decide if the situation is right for you.

7. You don’t need reassurance each day, but every now and then, it’s nice to hear how someone feels about you and the relationship you have built. When communicating any concerns, your partner should reassure you of their feelings. If you leave the conversation feeling more confused than before, chances are you’re in a one side situationship.

Nicky further shares her expertise on how to decide if a situationship is right for you: ‘Determining whether a situationship is right for you involves a careful evaluation of your own values, needs, and long-term goals. 

‘Reflect on your own expectations and desires from a relationship in your current period of life, considering past experiences. 

‘If you are comfortable with ambiguity and enjoy the freedom that comes with an undefined connection, a situationship might align with your preferences. 

‘However, if you value clarity, defined roles, and long-term commitment, a traditional relationship may be a better fit.’

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‘Situationships inherently breed ambiguity and ambiguity breeds emotional turmoil. A little straightforward communication goes a long way

Dr Rina Bajaj, counselling psychologist & author of ‘The Magic in Me Situationships often leave people grappling with complex emotions long after they’ve ended. 

‘While traditional relationships come with their own set of challenges, situationships can be uniquely difficult to move on from. 

‘They lack the clarity of defined boundaries that relationships often provide. Without labels or commitments, individuals may find themselves unsure of where they stand with their partner, leading to confusion, insecurity, and ultimately, difficulty in letting go. 

‘The ambiguity surrounding the nature of the relationship can intensify feelings of rejection and abandonment when it ends.

‘Despite the lack of formal commitment, individuals in situationships often invest significant emotional energy into the connection. They share intimate moments, confide in each other, and develop a sense of closeness that mirrors that of a relationship. When the situationship ends, the emotional investment made can make it harder to detach and move on. 

‘Situationships are notorious for giving participants a false sense of hope. Despite the absence of commitment, there may be moments of intimacy, affection, or even discussions about a future together that lead one or both parties to believe that the relationship is progressing. 

‘When the situationship inevitably comes to an end, the dashed hopes and unfulfilled promises can be particularly devastating.

‘Many individuals enter into situationships as a way to avoid being alone. They may enjoy the companionship, intimacy, and emotional support that the connection provides, even if it lacks the stability and commitment of a traditional relationship. When the situationship ends, the fear of returning to loneliness can amplify feelings of sadness and loss.

‘Despite the growing acceptance of non-traditional relationship dynamics, situationships can still carry a social stigma. Individuals may feel ashamed or embarrassed about being involved in a relationship that doesn’t fit societal norms, making it harder to process and move on from the experience. 

‘The fear of judgment from friends, family, or peers can further complicate the healing process. Situationships often end without closure. Unlike the clear-cut nature of many breakups in traditional relationships, situationships may fizzle out gradually or end abruptly without a clear explanation. 

‘This lack of closure can leave individuals with unresolved feelings of anger, resentment, or confusion, making it harder to find emotional closure and move on.

‘In a society that idealises romantic relationships, individuals in situationships may find themselves constantly comparing their experiences to those of friends or peers who are in committed partnerships. This comparison can lead to feelings of inadequacy or insecurity, as they may wonder why they weren’t able to transition their situationship into a ‘real’ relationship.

‘Unlike the support network that often surrounds individuals going through a breakup, those in situationships may have fewer people to turn to for guidance and comfort. Friends and family may not understand the complexities of a situationship or may dismiss it as less significant than a traditional relationship, leaving individuals feeling isolated in their grief.

‘For some individuals, situationships can become a pattern, repeating the cycle of emotional investment, disappointment, and heartache. Breaking free from this cycle requires introspection and self-awareness, as individuals must examine their underlying motivations and fears that keep them trapped in these temporary connections. 

‘In situationships, individuals may compromise their own needs, desires, and values in order to maintain the connection or please their partner. When the situationship ends, they may struggle to rediscover their sense of self and rebuild their identity outside of the relationship. This loss of identity can prolong the healing process and make it harder to let go.

ᴀʀᴛɪᴄʟᴇ ꜱᴏᴜʀᴄᴇ

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