Netflix’s Holidate focuses on two attractive people who decide to date each other just around the different holiday seasons, with practically no strings attached.
But what might shock you is that the concept of a “holidate” doesn’t just exist in the movies. Turns out, it’s a real-life dating tactic that’s literally backed up by science.
Why Does It Suck To Be Alone On The Holidays?
The culture we live in plays on ideas that we worry about expectations around holidays (especially ones at the end of the year).
Cute couples can become overly annoying during the holidays, simply because it kind of sucks to be single during the holidays. Especially when you’re seeing your family and all of them are constantly asking why you don’t have a boyfriend or girlfriend.
What Even Is A Holidate?
This is probably pretty obvious, but the word holidate is just a combination of the two words ‘holiday’ and ‘date.’
It means someone you’re just dating for the holidays and nothing more. Think of it like cuffing season, but for all of the holidays throughout the year. Easter, St.Patties, Christmas, Valentine’s — the list goes on.
Let’s Get Wordy: The Urban Dictonary Definition
Urban dictionary defines holidate as the following: “the person, of a romantic nature or not, that you take with you to mitigate the insanity of being near family during major cultural events that require a lot of gathering, eating, and spending quality time together.”
“Examples of such holidays include Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter.”
According to Psychology Today, during the holidays, we are supposed to be together with loved ones, sharing holiday cheer.
For many people, the holidays are happy and joyful, full of love and light. But for others, intense holiday expectations can make us feel like we are doing something wrong, almost as if it were our fault that we’re not as happy as other people.
It’s Not Your Fault
Even if you are single for the holidays, that’s okay! We shouldn’t feel any pressure to be in a relationship, even if the families and couples in the commercials really do look super happy.
If you don’t want to be alone, what’s wrong with picking up a cute new boo just for the holiday season?
Psychology Today claims that this cultural pressure, along with less-than-joyful experiences in our family, can lead us to look for ways to force our own “happy holidays.”
We don’t like being alone on the holidays, especially in the winter months, so some people seek to spend them with someone special.
So, It’s Kind Of Like Seasonal Friends With Benefits?
Essentially, yes. Your holidate is the person that you simply spend time with during the holiday seasons, and it usually doesn’t mean that you are fully dating them.
When it comes to intimacy and sex, there are no set rules on it, except that it’s usually platonic at first (but we all know how that can turn out). If you want to spend the night together after attending a friend’s St. Patrick’s Day party, that’s up to you to decide.
Do I Text Them?
You don’t call or text each other at any other time, and if you bumped into one other at the shops, you’d probably say hey but not actually stop and make conversation.
Maybe you might contact one another a little before the holidays so you can arrange plans, presents, and dress codes and stuff like that, but that’s about it.
Who Wants To Do This
Holidating is most attributed to people who are avoiding true intimacy, and who are anticipating with dread the fast-approaching holidays.
If you’re fed up with your extended family CONSTANTLY asking you why you’re single when you see them during the holidays, it could be smart to find a holidate just so you can seem like you finally have it all figured out.
Holidate – The Movie
So, the idea of holidating has been around for a while, but until Netflix made a movie about it, it wasn’t really more of a pop culture reference like it is now.
Sloane (Emma Roberts) and Jackson (Luke Bracey) both find themselves tired of being alone for every holiday, so they decide to be each other’s designated “plus ones” to their family gatherings during the year.
Emma Roberts Stars As Sloane
Sloane is a 20-something-year-old living in Chicago who HATES the holidays due to the judgment she receives from her family for not being in a relationship.
Having recently broken up with her boyfriend, Sloane’s mother Elaine is constantly trying to set her up with a new man, which really annoys Sloane.
Luke Bracey As Jackson
Jackson is a young Australian golfer stuck spending the holidays with a girl he has no interest in pursuing a serious relationship with and her family.
When he breaks up with the other girl and meets Sloane at the mall, Jackson suggests that they be each other’s ‘holidate’ so he can avoid attachment girls and Sloane can avoid pity from her family.
The two characters make up a ton of different rules about their relationship during the holidays in order to make sure that everything goes to plan
In the beginning, the characters meet up on specific days and times, and they have specific rules about intimacy and declare that there shall be none (take a guess if this works out or not).
Spoiler Alert: Feelings Get In The Way
As with most rom-coms that are about two platonic friends, after holidating for a while, the two eventually fall for each other, and after much deliberation, decide to date for real.
Due to its relatively cheesy nature, the film received a solid 44% on Rotten Tomatoes.
You Always Need To Think About Feelings
So, holidating may not always go according to plan, because well, feelings. The two characters in the movie have sex and then argue over not sticking to their initial platonic plan.
If you decide to holidate IRL, you’ve got to be prepared for the worst — falling in love. You might end up getting together, and then hey, you’ve still got a date for the holidays anyway, so you both could end up WINNING at life.
Overall, The Movie Kinda, Sorta Sucked
I watched this movie with a few friends when it came out, and I thought that it was cheesy, but alright. I really like Emma Stone, the guy was Australian and hot and they had really good chemistry.
85% of Google users liked it, but it got pretty abysmal reviews in the press, due to its clichée nature and its fair share of bad jokes.
There Are Other Movies Just Like It
Holidate is not the only movie out there that focuses on two people pretending to be one another’s significant other.
Can’t Buy Me Love (which will be one of my favorite movies until the end of time), Picture Perfect, Easy A, Just Go With It, Love The Coopers, The Holiday Engagement, and Holiday In Handcuffs are just a few examples of movies where characters start fake dating someone for their own benefit, or for the holidays.
Would You Consider It?
That all being said, is holidating a good idea? I guess that’s up for debate, but there are ALOT of different factors that go into it.
You need to make sure that both of you are on the same page at all times.
Holidating Needs To Be Consensual
Ok, so it’s time for some straight-up facts. If the person you’re seeing right now only invites you to special occasions like New Years’ or on an outing on Valentine’s to take pictures for Instagram, you might just BE a holidate.
If they’ve never discussed feelings, hardly ever contact you or you met them in another city and now they’ve forgotten about you — it’s a holidate.
One could argue that if you’re tired of being single during the holidays, then you should just find a significant other.
But, what if at the same time, you’re just not ready for intimacy at the moment? A holidate sounds like the perfect answer, but there is a chance that feelings may get in the way.