The Inevitable "What Now?"

You know those questions you hesitate to ask out of fear of what the answer will be? Those consuming, anxiety-inducing ones you aim to avoid at all costs. They're stressing regardless of the situation, but especially so in the context of relationships. You like someone, they like you, you talk, you fall in love, yada yada, yet throughout it all, you’re convinced you two can never actually be together. And so it remains: “it’s complicated.”

As far as social media has allowed it, the idea that two individuals can “decide their fate” before physically living it, has grown within the years and is responsible for the thousands of “it’s complicated” relationships out there today. You'd think that loving someone would be enough to be with them, right? Wrongggg. Unfortunately, the cold-hearted truth is that, no matter how much it’s glamorized and simplified on TV’s and in movies, love is never actually that easy.

Nonetheless, sometimes, even after accepting this harsh reality, some “it’s complicated” relationships do eventually make it. After forced to ask themselves the inevitable question of “What now?” they become reconciled for either a rude awakening or a favorable surprise. Complications and aversions aside, some couples are capable of overcoming the amateurish “it's complicated” stage, and solidifying their relationship. The question pressures them into admitting that their love has developed enough to advance their flaky titles.

Buttttttttt before I start sounding like the relationship-expert I'm not, let me just clarify that the only reason I'm even talking about something so out of my league is that, unfortunately, I'm currently in an extra, “it's complicated” situation. And, as expected, I’m gradually facing the repercussions of it. You see, it's becoming the time I answer the “What now?” of this situation, and honestly, I'm anxious at the thought of what'll happen once I do. Am I wasting my time or am I feeding potential; focusing on what could be? Either case, I owe it to myself to figure that out.

Besides, the missing title between bae and I (you'll see later on why I can't refer to him as anything other than that) has me stressed out, and beyond annoyed. Look, I'm not saying a label has the power to make or break a relationship but is it a drag having to explain that Yes, he's my person but no he's not my man and yes we act like a couple but no we're not dating? Of course, it is. The stress behind not knowing how to even introduce this person to friends and family is overwhelming and embarrassing. Oh hey, Dad! Remember that guy I told you about a few months ago? Yeah well, this is him, Jake. Nice to meet you, Jake. How long have you two been together again? Oh actually we're uhh, uhm, we’re not together like that ahahah. *Awkward silence* Do you see my dilemma?! “It’s complicated” relationships are the epitome of awkwardness- not only for the two in them, but for those surrounding them as well. I guess where I'm going with this is that although I'm technically not his girl, I totally wouldn't mind promoting bae to boyfriend- especially for the sake of clarity.

Andddd that brings us back to the reason why I haven't already done that, which is that it's too complicated. I could go into the logistics of my specific case, but that would take a while. Not to mention, I'd probably start crying over how, unfortunately- depressing my love life actually is. So, to keep it simple and tear-free, I'll just generalize from now on.

Basically, after an extended period of awkward introductions, and countless debates on whether or not it's finally time to make your relationship “official,” there comes a moment of realization. At this point, you've already asked yourself “What now?” and ideally, have succumbed to an answer. There comes a time when you seek clarity once and for all. A time when you become tired of having to break down your situation to all of your friends and family. There comes a time when you don't want to hold back from showing them off on all social platforms- yes, that even means being invited to their Christmas work parties, AND finally being their WCW on insta!! There comes a time when you don't hesitate to call them your boyfriend; a time when even that word- the word you've been dying to call them- becomes irrelevant compared to the excitement of simply knowing that they are finally uncomplicatedly yours. The accumulated desire to “officially” be with this person becomes so overwhelming, to the point where you're forced to make a decision: either solidify the relationship or scrap it. Are we ever going to actually be together, or have we just wasted X months of our lives?

Brutal as it is, the question gets straight to the point. The two inevitable fates are prompted yet again: become an item and stay together, or go your separate ways. After all, no matter how many times I've personally admitted to disagreeing with what I'm next about to say, true love knows no complications. That's right, any obstacles we may think are too big to overcome, are actually just proof that maybe you shouldn't be together…

But before I get hammered on how that statement “isn't true,” and that sometimes things really are too complicated- hear me out. Anyone who truly wants to be with you, will. If it's a love triangle, they'll leave the other person. If it's distance, they'll duke it out with you until you two can finally be together. If it's school, or jobs, or anything else, they will find a solution-- that is if they want to. And, if they don't, then that answers the question for you. The “What now?” becomes clear: you're the second option. If it's the love triangle, you're just collateral damage. If it's the distance, you're not worth the wait. And if it's school or the job or anything else, you're clearly the second-best option, and that is your queue to leave. Because, as corny as it sounds, you really do deserve to be with someone who's confident that they want you. That if someone who claims they love you, is struggling to itemize your relationship, then maybe they don't love you as much as they insist.

I'm personally taking into account all of this, and using it to help me answer my own “What now?” Maybe, it's time I lay the cards on the table-- admit that it's become redundant having to explain why this guy who claims to want me, isn't willing to advance our relationship. And then, if his response is anything other than what I've been longing to hear, maybe it's time I throw in the towel. Or, on the other hand, if it ends up being exactly what I've been wanting to hear, the Look, I know we're complicated but if you're willing to go through this with me, then I'm willing to go through it with you, then all the months of awkwardness, uneasiness, and unsureness, will have been for something. They'll have been worth it. They will have all been for something that not even I could have imagined; could have hoped for. Everything that I'd previously experienced with this individual would have been all leading to the moment of security I had subconsciously been craving the whole time. The overdue question will be asked, and the inevitable “What now?” will be answered.

 

- Anonomys 


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