How The “What Are We?” Talk Can Go Terribly Wrong

May 17, 2017  |  
1 of 15 young african american couple in front of new home.

It’s normal to want to define a relationship. For your own sake, you need to know whether or not you should continue putting your eggs in other baskets (and keeping your toothbrush at other guys’ places). Plus, next time your mom asks you if you have a boyfriend you’d like to be able to say, “As a matter of fact I do so get off my back!” (Okay, maybe you’d put it a little more delicately than that). And you can’t quite go around calling someone your boyfriend if they don’t know they’re your boyfriend. Ugh. It’s like you have to get paperwork signed just to change your Facebook relationship status to “In a relationship.” At the very least you need the guy to blink once if you’re in a relationship and twice if you’re just one of his many flings. Here are ways the “what are we talk?” can go wrong.


You have it while fighting

You’re in such a heated argument—almost like an argument a couple would have. So you think this is a great time to say, “We’re fighting like we’re in a serious relationship! Are we in a serious relationship, by the way?” You aren’t now.







You bring it up during your birthday

You were hoping to give yourself the birthday gift of a boyfriend. So when you’re three Martinis down you ask (loudly over the music), “Are you my boyfriend or what?!” And everyone turns and looks at you two while the guy says, “Um…can we talk about this another time?”





His friend answers for you

You ask the guy what you are and his friend, standing nearby, says, “He’s not looking for anything serious! Let it go!” Thanks drunk friend.








The other woman he’s dating answers for him

Another woman he is dating is standing nearby, overhears the conversation, and says, “What do you mean what are you guys? He is my boyfriend!” Gulp.





The, “I don’t like labels” response

Otherwise known as the, “I’d really like to be able to sleep with whoever I want, whenever I want, without it being called cheating” guy.







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“We’re in a serious relationship, duh”

Woah, woah, woah. It’s one thing if a guy already assumed you were in a relationship, but a “serious” one? And he’s already told his parents you’re coming home for the holidays? He’s been living in some fantasy relationship without you, apparently.





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“Isn’t this a money exchange thing?”

Hey, some men treat their escorts well. So well that it’s hard to distinguish an escort from a girlfriend. But a guy may very well have a big check he was about to write you for your “services” since you approached him at that hotel lobby bar three months ago.





“Well, you owe me $600”

Of course, the guy who has been the picture-perfect boyfriend for the last few months may also be a professional boyfriend. And he may be wondering where his fat check is.







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“I live here, and at another woman’s place”

This dude is “between homes” and has just been living at your place when you let him, and another woman’s place when she lets him. If you’re willing to let him move in full-time, he could be your boyfriend. How romantic.








“Didn’t you know I’m married?”

How were you supposed to know that? Just because he never lets you go to his place and likes to meet at hotels and prefers you only call him on his cell phone oh never mind.


“I’m looking for a green card”

You wanted to know if this guy would make you his girlfriend already; he wanted to know if you’d make him your husband already. Not because he’s nuts about you, but because he’d like to stay in the country. Apparently you were supposed to pick up on that because of all the phone calls he got from immigration.





“I was hoping for in-state tuition”

Gulp. Another one who was just hoping to use you for your residency! You were just hoping for a plus one to bring to your friend’s wedding, but he’s wondering if you could help him pay less for his MFA program by marrying him. “We can totally get a divorce when I graduate,” he says. How sweet.





“Well, my girlfriend’s in jail for a while so”

Aaah. His GF is in jail for five to 15 so, really, you could have a full-blown relationship in that time. You could even get married, have some kids and get a divorce.








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“I was hoping for a job”

They say it’s lonely at the top. They didn’t tell you how lonely it would be to be on top of your industry, get on top of a guy in bed, and then have him tell you he’d like to be under you—like as an employee.







“Aren’t we just friends?”

Some men have a strange definition of friendship. Does he have sex with all of his friends? Like Steve? Does he have sex with Steve? Well does he? You want an answer! Oh, he’s leaving.

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