Let’s be real—romantic relationships are not easy to navigate. No matter the duration of time or level of commitment, they always require some amount of exertion to make them work. Oftentimes, the work pays off in the form of a healthy and fulfilling relationship that is long-lasting.
But what about situationships?
Even if you are not familiar with the phrase, you are likely acquainted with the feeling. Situationships are that awkward, in-between space when you are not exactly committed to someone but there are a ton of unanswered questions regarding the status and future of the relationship. Plainly put—it’s a situation without any definition. However, situationships are not always negative as they can allow for complete freedom and lighthearted dating, if both parties are down for it.
This love life struggle is explored through the new digital series Situationships, which is now on Amazon Prime. Previously aired as a digital series on BET, the show is the brainchild of multi-talented creative and writer Cylla Senaii who also stars in the series. Based off of her own experiences and that of her peers, Situationships follows a group of millennials as they make their way through the perils and successes on dating. The series is also currently in development for television with notable tv producer and entrepreneur Mona Scott-Young. Scott-Young will executive produce Situationships under her Monami Productions banner.
EBONY sat down with the creator to discuss the inspiration behind the series and tips for navigating situationships should one ever find themselves entangled in one.
You have been working on Situationships since 2014 . How did the opportunity to get this project on Amazon Prime and work with Mona Scott-Young present itself?
It didn’t happen overnight whatsoever, but I had the pleasure of getting to work with Mona Scott-Young after she took a huge liking to the project. Over the course of the pandemic, she helped me further develop it and make it a full-fledged TV show. That’s what's coming next. I also have dreams of making it into a movie and a play with rumblings of a book.
When I started my creative journey in 2014, I had no clear path. I didn't have any family members, or connections in the industry at the time so I was learning, trying, failing and trying again as I went.
When I got to New York, I bonded with a whole bunch of friends, who are also filmmakers, that loved the idea of Situationships. From there, I put a casting call on a lot of different sites and we had over 4000 actors submit. That was huge for me considering that it was a no budget production. However, many people related to the subject matter as they saw themselves of someone they Since then, we were able to get it distributed on a couple other streaming platforms to get people back in the Situationships zeitgeist and basically binging it again which led to us trending over the summer.
Situationships has been my baby so I’m very excited about this.
Situationships covers a variety of nuanced relationship types and structures, especially as social media heavily dictates how successful relationships are or what constitutes a “real relationship.” Can you speak about how social media trends have impacted dating norms today and how it plays into the relevance of situationships?
A major theme of Situationships is how social media truly dictates the way in which many of us date at this time. Everyone is one swipe away. You can hit that like button or you can completely swipe someone off. This has led to us living more of life behind screens and not truly experiencing things in real time. Now, when it comes to face to face interaction, there seems to be a disconnect, at least as it pertains to the millennial generation.
Because of this, we took this phenomenon into account when it came to a lot of our scenes through the incorporation of social media. It's hard for us to find love and vulnerability with other people because we're so used to curating every single detail. This definitely makes the way we see the world starkly different from previous generations and it's is how Situationships sets itself apart.
Although situationships can be an emotional rollercoaster, some may prefer the flexibility that comes with it. Generally speaking, are you team situationships or team relationship?
I'm team do whatever works for you. I feel that as long as you have open communication with the person you are seeing about what you're looking for and what you want, that's all that matters. When there isn't open communication about what each person wants, that's where the issues arise and where you can fall into that Gray area. We want to avoid that at all costs.