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Almost relationships


Definition: A fucking relationship but without the ‘label’. 

Unlike the generation before us, us millennials have the worst luck when it comes to romantic relationships. Whether you would like to admit it or not, but the dating game was definitely easier before our time, even though we are the ones with the ‘dating’ apps.

We are trapped in this kind of loop where we meet someone, ‘chill’ with them for a while and before you know it, the expiry date comes knocking on your door. You go from strangers to friends to ‘I don’t know what the fuck this is’ to being strangers again.

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Your heart breaks, not once but several times because the accessiblity to these ‘situations’ is infinite and like a failing addict in rehab, we go crawling back to our temptations the moment we see an opportunity.

But do we learn from any of it? Of course, not! Romanticising the idea of heartbreaks is what the world feeds us every day and we fall for it every single time. We are on our way to change the world with the kind of exposure that we are lucky to have now but we can’t even maintain the simplest of things — a relationship.

Just like your first drink, you definitely remember the first time you get involved in an ‘almost relationship’. You think it’s exciting because there are no rules, no limitations and it feels like nothing you’ve ever experienced before.

I remember my first one like it was just yesterday; a lover in a fuckboi’s disguise. Sweet yet sarcastic, kind but stood his ground and most importantly, amazing in bed.

This is how the trouble begins with these kind of said ‘relationships’. There was a time when people fell in love first and then fell in bed. Now, we test out the product first before deciding whether we like it enough to keep it around or not.

However, it’s no secret that the exciting approach we have towards having sex with someone new eventually fades away. But that is exactly where the actual trouble begins.

It would be great if it was as convenient as, “Hey, I don’t find sleeping with you awesome enough anymore so I’m pulling the plug on this”. But instead, the sexy times stop and we continue seeing each other. 

For what? For companionship for our lonely, lonely souls. But do we admit that we like the person enough to make this permanent? Hell, no! Instead, we say, “Eh, I mean, we like each other and literally talk every second of the day but I don’t think we are there yet”.

Fuck this “we aren’t there yet” concept. We are just emotionally-damaged cowards, victims of pop culture which teaches us that being ‘tied down’ will be the end of our free will.

It’s like shopping; you’ve picked out something you like but your mind tells you to explore every possible option out there before making a final call. But unlike the mall, the options here are endless and the store isn’t shutting down anytime soon.

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My own ‘almost lover’ was probably the closest to anything real I’ve ever felt in my entire life but the idea of freaking him out over this development sounded so risky that he didn’t even know. So, it went on and on like it was, more intense with each day but even the thought of actually committing to it sounded like an impossibility. 

The very unfortunate fact about these ‘we are just seeing each other’ situations is that the lack of expectations and commitment eventually finds a way to the finish line.

Before you know it, you’re fighting like an old married couple and that’s when one of you freaks out that things are getting ‘serious’ and decides to walk out. Of course, things will get serious. It’s been eight months and by now, I know exactly how long it takes for you to take a dump; not something that’s in your Tinder bio.

Just like that, one day it’s there, all up in your space but the next morning, it was like it never happened. After spending months at end with each other, sharing your deepest, darkest desires, the person goes away. The saddest part? You can’t do anything about it because they were never really yours to begin with.

“I told you this isn’t forever. Now, don’t be upset about it.”


How do I not get upset? I wish it was easier said than done but no one ever told me how to get over someone who wasn’t even mine. There’s an endless supply of books and articles in Cosmo, telling you ’10 Ways To Get Over A Break Up’. 

But if this wasn’t a relationship, was there really a break up?

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What do you do when someone asks you about your puffy eyes at work because you cried yourself to sleep after having too many vodka tonics? Do you tell them you are going through a break up? But then, how will you explain this non-existent relationship that they had no clue about?

Instead, you hold it in and lie about not getting enough sleep and bury yourself in work or really bad music. You go on for days, stalking their Instagram profiles, making sure they aren’t ‘almost relationship-ing’ with someone else.

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But there comes a point where you have to make the difficult decision to stop your aching heart from feeling so goddamn sad all the time. What do you do then? You go back on the dating app that caused all this trouble in the first place and find a distraction. In some cases, multiple distractions.

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You go out, seek your almost lover in every person you decide to have a ‘scene’ with and eventually come home to an empty bed, drunk dialling the heartbreaker.

Time does its only job and heals away your not-so-physical wound. Your tear ducts finally dry up and you condition yourself to be without them, just like you conditioned yourself into being with them. It gets easier but there are moments when that one song plays or someone calls out a name that you look back with familiarity but reality hits you within seconds.

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“You have to get over this”, you tell yourself. Your ‘distractions’ become your agony aunts and you start finding made-up solace in these meaningless validations.

But eventually, you get there. You get to the place where it doesn’t hurt as much and the mention of their existence doesn’t make you spiral out of control. 

What no book ever taught you and no article could ever get right, you pull yourself out of this shithole on your own. You tell yourself you will never want to experience this again and make a note in your diary to not repeat the same mistake.

But you do. Oh, you do it all over again, several times. You live here now; the only difference is, it hurts just a little less with every time and you’re stronger with every goodbye.


So, each time you remember the first time and say to yourself, “You don’t hurt me anymore.”