Navigating Your Situationship on Valentine’s Day (2024)

Written by Paula Brečak for Self Studies

Is there ever a more intense day which nudges you (gently or not so much so) towards evaluating your relationship or, in case you haven’t labeled it with the R-word yet, your thing that you have with that person you are sort of seeing, than Valentine’s Day?

For the ones in a relationship with a capital R and with a partner with a capital P, Valentine’s Day can arrive like a checklist. What is expected is romance, date, and sex - check, check, check. While it can be quite convenient to have this external force tell you this is one day that you should set aside and dedicate to your partner and your relationship, it can also feel like unwanted pressure. How long since we last had sex? Why is it so difficult to make time for a date? We had romance once, how can we get it back? If and when those questions creep in, be it Valentine’s Day or any other old Tuesday, give them the attention they deserve. They will not solve themselves and they will certainly not go away. So maybe your Valentine’s Day is not all fun and games. Maybe it is deep and honest conversations, perhaps facilitated through the Emotional Conversation Cards designed just for the purpose of opening communication channels to save love. And if it comes to games and play later, amazing!

But this article is not for those ready to whip out deep emotional relationship-saving cards during a Valentine’s Day date. This piece is for those not sure about where their thing stands on February 14th. For those of you who are seeing somebody but it is not quite a relationship, maybe it is not quite anything. Maybe you don’t even know if you want it to become anything. Valentine’s Day is here and you are finding yourself in a situationship.

Situationship, as defined by one contributor on Urban Dictionary, is when you “take part in a relationship, but out of fear of making things serious or messy do not label it, leading to said relationship, ironically, becoming more serious and messier”. It is more than just a few dates or casual sex, but less than a boyfriend or a girlfriend. You are developing some emotions towards each other but you are both hesitant to address them. What really defines a situationship is the lack or avoidance of definition. But when it comes to Valentine’s Day, even deciding to ignore or avoid the day’s significance is a statement. So how to go about your situationship on Valentine’s Day?

Make it silly

Acknowledge that the V-Day is happening and that the two of you are in an intimate thing but also signal you don’t want the day to be super deep romance by resorting to some goofiness. Agree to give each other gag gifts, something utterly pointless and non-romantic. It can be personal or less so, depending on how much you really know this person or how much you want to let them know you know them. If you want to make sure you are not singling them out, you can do the same with your friends and then just include your situationship in one of the people you are giving a funny thought to this Valentine’s Day. A gift can happen whether you see each other on the day or not. It could be an easy and non-overbearing way of communicating that your thing is fun and light, and you both want to keep it that way. This way you will successfully swerve around the serious romantic pressures of Valentine’s, without it being an end of your non-serious thing.

Go on a non-date date

If you know you want to spend the day together but don’t want it to be heavy on the romance and the feels, plan a non-date date. Choose the most mundane and everyday activities you have to get out of the way anyway and join each other during them. If you both work from home, do some co-working time either at one of your homes or a café. Set up a Netflix and chill evening in your sweats. Go to the gym together and you each do your own thing. Go grocery shopping but not for a joint meal. For sure do not go to IKEA - we all know an IKEA date is actually a real serious date even though it might not sound like it. By going on a non-date date, you can still have the company of your situationship during Valentine’s Day (and possibly sex), but without the romantic atmosphere and big expectations.

Make your priorities clear

If your situationship starts talking about your joint Valentine’s plans, and that is not something you had in mind, use that opportunity to set your boundaries, priorities, and expectations. Valentine’s Day is a great time to focus on yourself and perhaps that is exactly what you want to do. Or perhaps your friends are throwing a singles party and you feel like you belong there more than on a date with your current situationship interest. Better yet, pre-empt the person you are casually seeing having ideas you do not go along with, and announce as soon as possible what your V-Day plans are, making it clear they do not include them. It might sound too-direct and harsh, but better to communicate your priorities than have the person you enjoy hanging with be disappointed and hurt by you not being on the same page and not realizing that in time.

Have that talk (if you’re ready)

The Valentine’s Day nudge to evaluate your relationship is not necessarily a bad thing, albeit perhaps a little surprising and uncomfortable. It can be an apt opportunity to think about what you want and whether you are getting that out of your current situation. Maybe you are perfectly happy with hanging out in a situationship and not progressing it further, but maybe not. There is no right or wrong answer, only what is right for you right now. If you realize that the situationship is not what you want or need, let the other person know. Yes, it is not the best breaking a relationship - even a situationship - around Valentine’s Day. But it is better than pretending and forcing something you do not really enjoy being a part of.

Even if it all untangles right before the V-Day and you are left with no goofy gifts and non-romantic dates, take that time to focus on yourself and have the most romantic evening with the one you should always prioritize first - you. After all, you are the one who can get the best gifts for yourself, and we suggest Coco, a truly original vibrator that will make sure your Valentine’s is far from boring.

Navigating Your Situationship on Valentine’s Day (2024)
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