You are not the only one with this type of friend.
We’ve all had that “one” we met at some memorable point in our lives. Maybe he was at a camp. Maybe you met him freshmen week. Maybe it was at a party and your eyes locked together and you spent the rest of that night hanging with him…until like 4 am because the night was so magical.
After camp you both went back to your distant homes from each other. After freshmen week you wandered into different friend circles. After that party you went back to your separate lives.
But you still text each other. You are social media friends. You stay connected but not consistent.
When that text does come again your heart races because you know your connection was so magical. You meet for lunch or another party and it is like no time has passed between the two of you.
You spend a lot of your emotional energy and time wondering if he could be “the one.” Because the connection is so strong. Because you keep finding your way back to each other. God must be bringing you two together. It is just a matter of timing.
In between times with your “friend” you are dating others. You are giving other good character guys a chance. But the click is not there. The magic is not there. When you get that random text again, your heart soars and you are back deeply emotionally connected to your “friend” again. This other guy you are dating just doesn’t have that same magic.
Friend is in quotes here intentionally. Because your relationship has only been defined as a friend—if it has been defined at all. But because of the magic, you really are friends with benefits. You have allowed him to kiss you. You have hooked up. The magic made it all feel so right. You just know you are going to end up together eventually.
But you’ve never told him any of this. You’ve never asked him “where are we heading?” or other such questions. You’ve let him come and go from your life with his randomness because you just know you are going to end up together eventually.
There was that one time you did make that break from him. You decided to move on and you felt brave about that decision. But then the text came again. The flutter came again. That attention and affection felt like a promise. You thought the risk was worth it. The magic is so real so what real risk is there? What do you have to lose if you could gain this magical relationship for a lifetime?
You really really expected after being together intimately that he would finally say what you’ve been expecting him to say. You are watching his every move just waiting for him to say these things. But instead he kisses you on the forehead and you take that sweet gesture as enough.
You never decide to ask the questions yourself because this moment was magic enough. Surely he knows you two are special. Why do you need to add words to it to screw it up?
What if he says at this very moment that the two of you are “just friends?”
You can’t bear that thought so you don’t speak at all.
Besides these days no one is acting all 1950s and using terms like “going steady” or even “boyfriend and girlfriend.” We pride ourselves on not having to label such relationships. We are more open than that. DTRing a relationship is so 1990s.
Meanwhile your heart desperately wants him to say that he is your love for a lifetime. Because your heart has been speaking that for years. Your heart has led every action and compromise because you desperately want to be more than friends. You want to be that special one. You keep waiting and waiting for him to see it too. To say it too.
Have you told yourself how miserable you are yet? Have you lied to yourself that hooking up is not a big deal? Are you removing your heart during those intimate moments believing that eventually you will be able to have sex with him and not have to lie to yourself afterwards?
Do you realize you are in love with a person you’ve idealized and who probably is not real?
Do you realize that you say you are an empowered woman yet you never use your power to share your real feelings with him?
Do you see how contorted you’ve become so that you are probably not real to him either? Does he really know you anymore?
A sad truth is you can’t even break up with him. What is there to break up with? Your relationship was never defined so you can’t define an ending. If the relationship doesn’t have an ending, there’s no real closure, no opportunity to move on. Your heart is going to stay in this muddled mess. You will continue to contort yourself to hang on to the magic (if there is any magic left to be truly had).
You have your memories of magic but he knows already you are not the one he wants to marry. You are not enough to him. You are not that special to him. He doesn’t want to settle with you for a lifetime.
You need to end this friendship but what you are really ending is a love relationship you never defined. That hurts so much worse. So much more than ending a friendship.
In this truthful moment, tell yourself that you are not “his one.” He is not “your one.”
He is not this great dreamy man after all. You have sacrificed you enough in this dead-end relationship. This relationship must come to an end. A painful end with very likely only you feeling the pain.
Make the ending. Stop lying to yourself. (Your friends probably already see this, by the way.) Block his number. He will never understand that move but so what. Get angry then grieve. Forgive yourself. Journal the good memories and then journal what you’ve learned about yourself. About how you let yourself get to this place. Journal what magic is and what real is. Take time to heal.
You will date again. And maybe that guy will have a real chance with you. Maybe that guy will know the real you.
May you find your empowerment again. You are worthy of a love for a lifetime. The whole of you is worthy of that love for a lifetime.