Even though there are a couple of origin stories for the term “sco pa tu manaa,” the general consensus is to speak one’s mind on any given idea when the phrase is coupled with a topic. The viral phrase has elicited countless opinions on various topics, and on one particular occasion, I participated in the spectacle. When one user asked that I speak my mind on “situationships,” I shared my two cents, but I didn’t expect for so many people to agree or relate.
I didn’t expect the tweet to perform as well as it did. Even if you don’t plan to be in a situationship, these things can catch us by surprise. However, there are five things I always consider whenever engaged in a situationship.
1. You don’t have to lie about anything
The beauty of relationships outside of what we’re taught are “normal” or “standard” is that we can make the rules as we go. Even if they don’t follow the order or bear the level of commitment associated with monogamous and committed relationships, situationships need to be honest. There is no need to lie about what’s going on. For instance, when either partner asks, “So…what are we?” Replying with “I don’t know, but for the time being, I’m enjoying your company,” isn’t something you have to feel bad about saying. If that’s how you feel, and all parties are comfortable with it, who is anyone outside of the relationship to judge.
2. Take care of your heart at all times, introspect
Consider the fact that there is potential to get hurt, particularly if you aren’t being mindful of how you engage your partner. Introspection about what works and doesn’t is important. More so, take care of your feelings before trying to tend to your partner’s sentiments. This isn’t to say that you don’t care for the other person’s feelings, however, it is to say that your own need to be addressed first. This includes knowing when to leave, especially if your partner’s and your own wishes begin to differ on a fundamental basis.
3. You are still single unless otherwise agreed
In the event that there has been no engagement on whether or not monogamy/exclusivity is a component of your relationship, you are single. You are as single as a lone wolf in the wilderness. You have the liberty to see other people.
4. You don’t have to commit all of your time to the other person
Maintain a social life exclusive of your situationship. Letting your partner monopolize your time will only serve to make it difficult to maintain a healthy distance from the engagement. Imagine binge-watching a series that is still being produced. You would be frustrated upon catching up with the series in real-time only to find that episodes take forever to develop. Now, why would you do the same thing to your relationship by spending too much of your time with your partner? Pace yourself.
5. A short relationship doesn’t make it any less impactful
In university, some of the shortest lectures make the greatest impacts on our academics. The duration didn’t matter, but the lesson meant everything, right? The same can be said for shorter relationships. A situationship is still a relationship, albeit not the traditional kind. Its duration doesn’t make it any less meaningful.