Modern dating terms explained

Navya Naveli Nanda and her mom Shweta Bachchan with her grandmom Jaya Bachchan, in a recent episode of What The Hell Navya, attempted to understand modern dating terms like breadcrumbing, snack, love bombing and more. Our team was really flummoxed on hearing these terms. The Gen-Z, who have been dating mostly through apps, have been using these new terms, which have left the Millennials and Gen X. If you are confused too, we’ve got your back. Here are some of the most common terms, explained.

Situationship: As the name suggests, this one is more of an arrangement– but, where neither party is yet clear about what the other person means to them. It could be sexual or not. The duo involved are definitely more than friends but are figuring out where the relationship stands. Situationships can be confusing and hard to navigate.

Breadcrumbing: This is when you have a love interest and you keep them hooked by paying them attention now and then, taking them on last-minute dates, and even sending flowers intermittently. You just lead them on, but not ready to make a commitment yet. They give just enough for you to think they’re interested, followed by long silences. 

Ghosting: This term is applicable to friendships too. This is when one suddenly stops any form of communication with someone they have been dating, matched online with, or even a friend they don’t want to have in their life. This is akin to ending a relationship cold turkey, without warning. It can cause much emotional trauma for the person at the receiving end of ghosting.

Love-bombing: If not looked at carefully, love-bombing could be a red flag, which would mean the potential partner could be a possessive/ jealous lover. Love-bombing means showering a new romantic interest or a potential love interest with grand gestures, gifts, a lot of attention and so on. With love-bombing, one risks upping the expectations of the other person and later disappointment when the expectations aren’t met. 

Snack: Calling someone a snack or a snacc, is borderline objectifying the person. It means the person is so sexy and attractive, you just want to gobble them up like a snack. 


Rizz: Rizz is the term used for someone with an attractive personality; a personality one cannot resist. It is used to describe a potential love interest with irresistible charisma. 

Soft launch: Slowly introduce the idea that you and the person you are dating are a couple. This involves posting a discreet picture of the two of you on social media, like clasping hands. You want to announce your relationship, but want to hide your partner’s identity so that things are less messy when it doesn’t work out.

Submarining: Submarining is similar to ghosting. Except, the person you are dating or matched up with, will resurface after months with a text or a call. This can make the person at the receiving end feel anxious and insecure.


Orbiting: Orbiting can mean two things. It can be observing a crush or someone you want to date without making contact– observing their online behaviour. Orbiting is also when a person has stopped all forms of communication with the other person and has made it clear that they aren’t interested, but, maintains contact on social media via likes.

Cookie- jarring: This term refers to someone seeking a relationship with a person as a backup plan. An analogy of sorts for, when a person reaches for a cookie jar for an instant snack– the person seeking out the backup, in case their first option falls out.