Monday, August 30, 2010

On Complicated Relationships

Facebook has been very good in bringing people I have known in the past back into my life. I know this is the case with millions of other people. I don't know about you, but as soon as I reconnect with somebody from decades ago, the first things I check are their current cities of residence, and their relationship statuses. For me, it foregrounds lines of interrogation about what they've been up to since we last were in contact.

I find it rather frustrating to see relationship status of my acquaintances marked 'It's complicated'. What in the world does 'it's complicated' mean? This is one of the most irritating cliched phrases I come across these days. You are either in a heterosexual, homosexual, or bi-sexual relationship. If you are in any of these relationships, there is nothing complicated about it, unless you are being unfaithful to your spouse with another human being or perhaps with one of your household animals.

In a recent discussion about this, a single friend said to me that he put his relationship status as 'It's complicated' because it was more 'colourful' and signals to the single girls on facebook that his relationship life needs a girl skilled in conflict resolution. Then I asked him if he was in a relationship with anyone at the moment, and learnt that he was not in a relationship, 'but I have a few girls I relate to, who come around to see me' he said.

Now I get it. It's complicated means you are playing the field by relating to several girls without being in a relationship. Perhaps I am the only one who thinks that promiscuity only looks cool if you are James Bond. For everyone else it is something people resort to who have low self-esteem ticking themselves up with every new conquest. 'It's complicated' also means, I think that the person with that status may be asexual, neither relating with human beings nor animals, and might be totally unsure of his or her own sexual orientation, or indeed if any orientation exists at all there.

This post reminds me of a discussion on Facebook where Richard Ali described a certain barmaid as a semi-whore, and I said there was no such thing. A person is either a whore or not a whore. People, friends, you are either in a relationship or you are not. You may be single, engaged, married, or divorced. If you are not sure whether or not you are in a relationship, then leave the field blank.