By Allan Wesley
With the advent of Facebook, more and more people seem to be describing or have described their relationships as complicated. This begs a couple of questions - Is this is a fad because it makes their relationship status different and mysterious? Why would anyone be in a complicated relationship and moreover, stay in one? Furthermore, what is a complicated relationship? Are people happy in complicated relationships? Life itself can be complicated but choosing to be in a complicated relationship would seem to defy common sense. Also, if we view relationships as a happy union, bond, or intimate connection strictly between two individuals then the term complicated relationship tethers on the cusp of qualifying as an oxymoron.
Complicated relationships run the gamut of unusual situations and have actually been around before Facebook. If you are knowingly and willingly involved in a love triangle then your relationship status can be described as complicated. How do you explain or describe your relationship to someone else? Often, when two people have a child or children together and the relationship has ended what ensues can sometimes be complicated. For example, the parents may occasionally get together for a tryst despite always having arguments and disagreements. They can't be with each other in a normal functioning relationship but enjoy the sexual arrangement. Long distance relationships by themselves are not complicated. However, if both parties decided to see other individuals until such time when they can finally be together then that arrangement can be interpreted as complicated if one is asked to explain. In an attempt not to lose her husband or a husband not to lose his wife some married people have moved a lover into the same household. If you ask such a man or woman about their marriage they may respond that it is complicated. Generally, complicated relationship seems to be the short answer given to describe an unusual relationship rather than delve into the details of the situation.
I can go on and on with scenarios of unusual or complicated relationships; they are endless. As you read this article, some of you are probably unfazed by those scenarios while for others these are unfathomable situations in which you vow you would never be involved. And herein we find one of the great differentiators between a complicated relationship and a normal relationship – the person(s) involved. For most of you, a relationship is about being with one specific person. You feel specially connected to that one person; you either love or like them a lot and they are the singular object of your physical and emotional desires.
As stated it is clear that complicated relationships are difficult to describe let alone explain to someone else. They are difficult to explain because they fall outside of what we would consider normal relationships. They may involve unusual feelings and behaviors and to this end, it explains why some people believe you can't really be happy in a complicated relationship. However, what if you are happy in your complicated relationship? Then the term complicated relationship, one can argue, is only for the people you have to describe your relationship to because you are just fine with your arrangement. The truth is that with all things considered, complicated relationships would not exist if people didn't decide to stay in them.
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