I don’t know what it is about these so-called dating trends. It seems to me that all these “trends” have been happening since Caveman Joe bashed Cavewoman Joanna over the head and dragged her to his cave by her hair, but we have only started giving them specific names in the 21st century. Men and women have been ghosting, breadcrumbing, cushioning, friend zoning, benching and all the other trends for centuries – just in ways according to the times. I guess the good thing about this labeling is that at least it helps us identify the status of our relationship and maybe understand what has gone wrong.
So, now that we’ve established that trends are a undeniable feature of modern dating, I would like to introduce you to one I have only recently heard of and that is stashing. Here is all you need to know about stashing.
Stashing is when your partner “stashes” you away. You seem to be in a committed and exclusive relationship where neither of you are seeing anybody else, yet there’s a lack of public acknowledgement that you are together. This pretty sums up all you need to know about stashing, but keep reading for more.
2 What Are the Signs of Stashing?
In a word - various! Your partner has met and been welcomed into your family with the clear understanding that he is your boyfriend, yet you have never met any of his immediate relatives. You are distinctly absent from your partner’s social media. There's no official status on Facebook, no pictures on Instagram, no acknowledgment of any relationship milestones. It might even extend to occasions when you’re out with your partner’s mates and you aren’t introduced as the girlfriend, but just given some random introduction.
3 Why Are You Being Stashed?
There are various reasons and some of them not easy to deal with. Of course, there may be some very good reasons why you haven’t met the important people in his life yet, say for example, family live far away or your partner is estranged from them, or that his friends are just unavailable or incredibly busy. But if you’ve been together for some time, there will reasons.
- Your partner is not ready to commit to a relationship and doesn’t want to go public until he feels he's ready.
- Your partner is not exactly ashamed of you but is afraid of what his family and friends will think of you.
- Brutal but honest, he IS ashamed of you.
- There’s trouble with an ex and your partner doesn’t want you exposed to it.
- He doesn’t see you as a long-term prospect, so why go through all the hassle of introducing you around. Saves all the “why did you break up” questions later.
- He wants you all to himself (a major sign your partner is insecure).
- He doesn’t have any friends.
- His friends and family are horrible and he prefers you not to have to deal with them.
Whatever the reasons you’re being stashed, you need to deal with the issue, because it is no basis for a healthy relationship.
4 How to Deal with Being Stashed
You have to ask the question. Honesty is the best policy and you need to bring it up directly with your partner. If there is a rational explanation as to why you are being stashed, it will come to light in the conversation and you can deal with it together. If, however, your partner is shady with his answers and they don’t seem concrete enough, or he makes you feel guilty for even raising the subject, then you need to seriously consider your relationship.
5 The Next Step
You already had more than an instinct that something wasn’t right and the conversation about being stashed will make your future a lot clearer. Whatever the reasons that surfaced, you need to deal with them. This might well mean realising that your partner doesn’t value you and doesn’t see you together in the future. Time to move on girl! Find someone who is proud to be with you, proud to introduce you to his friends and family and who values being with you.