Social Question

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Why would a guy put his Facebook relationship status as "It's Complicated" when his "girlfriend" has hers as "Single?"?

Asked by Introverted_Leo (1952points) April 29th, 2014

Just to make something clear up front: I’m not interested in getting involved with someone while they’re in an unresolved relationship, though I am interested in better understanding someone’s actions.

Background: I met this guy at work who, out of the blue, started being exceptionally nice to me for about a week—flirting with witty banter, pointing out dumb things like the fact we were wearing the same color shirts one day, complimenting me, following me around and trying to get my attention…the works. Then, at the end of that week, he asked me if I wanted to go to a party.

I ended up backing out (1) because I was genuinely surprised to be asked this by him (we’d never talked all that much before the week this all started), and (2) I’ve always taken “partying” to generally mean “get drunk and wild,” which is not my pace. Anyway, after this I didn’t see any more flamboyant behavior from the guy, though he was still very nice to me. (As I later found out from another co-worker, he was just planning on going bowling—which I totally would have done.)

I kinda felt bad because I DID actually want to hang out with him, so the following week I asked what he was doing on the weekend. He’s in a band so he had studio time and would be pretty busy, but he asked, “Why? You wanna hang out?”

I said yeah.

He responded that we should try to hang out the following weekend; I said okay. What really gets me is what he does afterwards: this little happy dance accompanied with a “oooo…!” noise he made as if he just managed to hook up with a really fine chick, lol. (I don’t know how else to describe it.)

Afterwards, I started putting some feelers out to see if he was actually interested in me or just being friendly. A few days later he came out and told me, apologetically, that he was “on break” with his girlfriend of 4 years, which has been really stressful and complicated for him, then said he’s sorry if he’s been sending mixed signals and thought I was nice and didn’t want to hurt me so he thought I should know and was just being honest.


Anyway, my question is: why would a guy label his relationship status on Facebook as “it’s complicated” if his girlfriend in question already has hers as “single?” I don’t know any more details about their troubles (not my business, really), but I just thought this was odd. (He’s a Gemini-Taurus cusp, if anyone cares; I’m a Leo-Virgo.)

I just think the whole situation is odd, honestly! Opinions welcome. :)

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

27 Answers

dappled_leaves's avatar

It’s so complicated that I can’t even read all the details.

If you’re unsure where you are in the relationship, ask him. If it’s so early that you don’t feel safe asking him about the state of your relationship, then why are you torturing yourself by wondering? Just see where it leads.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@dappled_leaves: I don’t even think you read my question… I’m not even in a relationship with this guy.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@Introverted_Leo I don’t think you read my response, which still stands.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Moving on.

Kardamom's avatar

They’re in an on again, off again relationship. So it is very complicated. She is in an off period with him right now, and he’s not sure yet if it’s on or or off. I suspect that they’ve broken up before and gotten back together. Sometimes people use the Single status to punish the other person in the couple, and when they make up again, they change it back to “in a relationship.” Just because one person puts single in their status, doesn’t mean that they’re finished with each other. That’s why he put “it’s complicated” because it is.

He might be fun as just a friend, but try not to get emotionally attached to him. In other words don’t date him and don’t even “hang out” which IMO is code for going over to someone’s house to make out with no strings attached. Kind of like the beginning of a Friends With Benefits kind of association.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Kardamom: Hmmm…that makes sense. It’s dumb, lol (or childish, I should say), but it makes sense. (Even he thought the idea of “taking a break is stupid,” in his words, but I just had to wish him luck.)

Thanks for the input!

jca's avatar

What @Kardamom said.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

I just realized I didn’t have to put all that background, lol…but i guess his behavior is confusing to me, as well. Did he just have a lapse of judgement and there were feelings, but he’s already involved with someone so he felt the need to apologize? Who knows…

jca's avatar

@Introverted_Leo: Maybe he’s just a flirt, or maybe he likes you but in his little heart of hearts, he’s attached to the other one.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

In other words: it’s complicated. ;)

jca's avatar

@Introverted_Leo: How did you know that girl is the one who is (was) his girlfriend?

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@jca: He’d added me on Facebook and he’s got like a million pictures of them together, so it wasn’t all that difficult to figure out…lol.

jca's avatar

Oh gotcha. He may be fun and he may be cute, but I would steer clear.

Cruiser's avatar

He has/had a GF…he is in a band and works with a lady like you who he fancies. He seems like he thrives on attention and since he is not getting it from GF he is turning to you to get that attention he craves.

I would confront him about the GF facebook status issue and that you think he needs time to sort out his feelings and when he does, tell him you would be up for a night of bowling.

bolwerk's avatar

It’s always complicated. I left mine that way when I signed up more than half a decade ago, and never changed it.

GloPro's avatar

Because they are both keeping secrets. You’re both fucked when it comes to your current relationship.

Haleth's avatar

If someone puts “it’s complicated” as their status, I wouldn’t go near them with a ten foot pole. Did you know that there’s an option on facebook to have no relationship status? You don’t have to even say you’re single- it just says nothing.

“It’s complicated” means he’s not sensible enough to keep their private life private, which is a big red flag in itself. But it also means you’ll probably get drawn into a merry-go-round of ridiculous relationship drama and bullshit.

You’re right to feel wary about him. If he’s really bangin’ hot, it might be worth having a fun fling with him, but a lot could go wrong. He works with you, and he sounds a little clingy (both to you and his ex.) This dude could be a train to crazytown.

ragingloli's avatar

because he does not want to admit to rape

ucme's avatar

Deluded loser?

cheebdragon's avatar

“It’s complicated” means it’s not worth ending but you still have 1 foot out the door.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Cruiser: I do want to get to the bottom of the Facebook status issue—or rather, what a “break” in his case entails. Sounds pretty vague and one-sided to me because I’m not even sure he knows what it really is, lol. (I get the strongest impression that it was the girl’s idea.)

Only reason I want to know the deets: he still flirts with me and consistently attempts to win my attention. (We’re not hanging out outside of work, though.) Not only that, I can tell it bothers him when I (pretend) not to notice his attempts to get noticed, and he always wants to get in the middle of a conversation when he sees it involves other guys and not him. Also, I have to admit: I am pretty attracted to him—more intellectually than physically, but there’s some on both levels; at the same time, I don’t want to get in the middle of “on a break” drama.

Anyway, I’ll try and get some more info about his situation soon enough. We’re both kinda busy, though, and I’m not really in a hurry. (He’s got his band; I run a small business when I’m not at our shared place of employment.)

Introverted_Leo's avatar

@Haleth: he could very well be a native from crazytown, lol. (He’s a Gemini, and I know a Gemini woman who drives me NUTS.) I don’t know him well enough to know if he’s all that clingy, though. (He has my number and isn’t blowing up my phone with texts all the time, anyway.) I think he’s a lot of fun and attractive, but I don’t plan on getting involved with him at the moment—not with a “kinda on a break” girlfriend on the side…

I don’t get the concept of “taking a break” myself—working in more solo time and less together time (for the super clingy couple), sure. Even a solo vacation here or there or more girls/boys nights out, for those who had very little/not enough of that going on in their lives to begin with. But an undefined “break?” That’s total BS, imo.

If a guy pulled that crap on me I’d probably dump him, lol. I look at it this way: if you want a “break,” then don’t get into a relationship in the first place. You live life together and have fun as a couple; you should be able to work things out together as a couple, too. And if one or both parties are feeling “suffocated,” then you’re probably just spending too much time together as it is and just need to lay off doing Every. Little. Thing. together. /rant

Anyhow, thanks to everyone for all of your answers so far. :) Don’t know if there’ll be more, but I’ve enjoyed them nevertheless.

GloPro's avatar

I believe you put too much stock in Facebook.

Also, frankly, unless you have had a conversation with this guy as to being exclusive (which you have not), then what or whom he is doing is not your business. You may always ask, of course, and I would respect an honest man over getting the response of “None of your business,” but it sounds Iike you are using Facebook to avoid actual conversation. Many people date more than one person at a time. If you can handle doing so, stop assuming things from Facebook and continue to develop a face-to-face relationship with him. Observe how he interacts with you in a variety of public situations. Trust your gut, not social media.

And stop looking at her page, if you don’t want to hurt your own feelings.

cheebdragon's avatar

Personally, I wouldn’t bring it up at all because at this point it just sounds like you’re Internet stalking the dude.
Also, this is going to sound really mean, but what makes you think he really likes you in that way? Some guys are just naturally flirty and will flirt with anyone of the opposite sex.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

Not that people here necessarily care, lol, but just a quick update:

In the end, I chose not to ask about the Facebook status at all because I didn’t want this to be about a Facebook status. My primary concerns were (1) was he technically still with the girl and (2) was he into me “that way” (romantically). I’ve waited a while (almost 2 months) to discuss any of this with him because I didn’t want to intrude upon what was going on or make things more complicated for him.

Anyway, just two days ago, he and I were in conversation with another co-worker—a man who happened to be joking around and asked my crush if he had a girlfriend, to which my crush answered a hesitant “well…no.” I figured after hearing this it would be a better time to talk to him about how I felt and my confusion as to whether or not he had feelings towards me.

Turns out he does have feelings, but he’s been hesitant to truly show this, due to the unresolved situation with his ex—which I told him I completely understand and appreciate. We are still friends, as of now, because he’s still dealing with the break-up and accepting that (still really loves the girl) plus serious medical problems his mom has been having in the hospital. Though, I’m just glad he was honest with me. (I think that’s what was bothering the most is not knowing if there were any feelings on his part when all of this was going on initially.)

I don’t know if anything will happen down the road, but I at least know now how he feels and I’m glad he’s doing what’s right for him at the moment: taking the time to focus on healing from the end of a long-term relationship and being there for his mom. I think that’s really mature of him and is something I admire, which he knows. :)

GloPro's avatar

Sounds like patience is a virtue. Thanks for the update!

Answer this question




to answer.
Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther