How to Tell if You Are in a Cookie Jar Relationship

The dating world truly is a jungle; every week it feels as though there’s another story on the things you should and shouldn’t be doing in your relationship, how you can get, and keep, the attention of someone you like, or a list of reasons why your romantic interest isn’t calling you back, some of which you didn’t even know were reasons why someone now won’t return your calls.

On top of this, there are words you’ve never heard of, dating terms you have to Google, and a whole new world of dating rules, so you’d be forgiven for being in a relationship that isn’t right for you, and you not even realizing it.

Unfortunately, the new trend of ‘cookie jarring’ is not a nice as it sounds. You can be in a cookie jar relationship and have absolutely no idea about it. To be in this type of relationship means you are essentially the backup option; someone is showing interest in you, enough to make you think there is something between you, but actually they are romancing another person on the side, and you are there if their other relationship isn’t going well, and they fancy putting their hand in the cookie jar because nothing better is in front of them, you see, you are the cookie jar.

Dating experts say that people are more likely to cookie jar another person if they are insecure in themselves, and need the attention and safety of knowing that they always have another option if something goes wrong with Plan A. That’s all well and good, but you don’t deserve to suffer not being a priority because of their insecurities.

So, how do you know if your dating partner is cookie jarring you? Well, you need to ask yourself a couple of things. Firstly, are they really hot and cold with you? Maybe you have a perfect couple of days, you go out and do what couples do, perhaps you go on a hike together, to the cinema, go to a couple of your favorite restaurants, and spend the evenings feeling romantic and cozy sharing stories of your past, and then nothing. Every time you feel like the relationship is going somewhere, suddenly they are nowhere to be seen.

Then a few days or a week goes by, they’ve messaged here and there with excuses of being busy with work or catching up with long lost friends, the replies become shorter with more time between each one, then just as you are ready to explode, bam! There they are asking if you want to join them for a weekend away in the Cotswolds. And suddenly you are swept off your feet, and all their behavior is forgotten.

Secondly, are they unwilling to commit? Maybe you are worried to ask them any question about commitment, especially if you are in the early stages of the relationship, so maybe start with asking if you can be exclusive? If this freaks them out, or they don’t want to talk about it, then it’s possible that you are a backup option to them, after all asking to be exclusive isn’t exactly a marriage proposal.

Of course, straight up asking them to be honest is an option, but it is certainly possible that they are not going to want to tell you the truth, so if you feel like you are with someone who does not make you feel like a priority, like you make them feel, or they are always changing the subject if you bring up any kind of commitment, then it might just be best to call it a day – you are no one’s Plan B.