Why I Like You
You said to me the other day that you see me as a human, not as a girl. Which I think meant you feel like I’m someone you can hang out with, like one of the guys, like an actual friend. This is fine. This is probably very good, actually. But it doesn’t mean that I don’t have feelings like a girl, or that I don’t have certain emotions that girls have. Maybe I don’t show it, because I don’t want to seem vulnerable or weak or be hurt, but I do have feelings and I do have emotions and being a feminist doesn’t mean I’m not still a girl. My feelings are even deeper and more intense, in every direction, than you could possibly imagine.
You used to see me as a girl. You were sweet to me and seemed to make an effort to make me feel good. You acted then the way I imagine you are with Sarah now. (The other night, you started to say that Sarah makes you want to be sweet to her, then you trailed off because — I assume — you realized how shitty hearing that would make me feel.) Then you got back together with Isabelle and we were strictly friends (which, fine). And in the meantime, while you were with Isabelle, that’s when I started sleeping with more people.
Do you know why? Because at one point, early on, when we were in bed at your apartment (it might have been the first time we slept together?) you told me you had two fetishes, two things you were really into: teeth and sluts. So I thought: “Okay, maybe I am just too prude, just too much of a good girl. Maybe I should slut it up a little bit.” Isn’t that stupid? It’s so stupid. I mean, it was fun for a while, yeah. Sort of exciting and empowering, maybe. But it was so stupid, because nobody actually likes a slut. They like the idea of a slut. They like watching sluts on camera. But nobody actually likes a slut in real life, because they assume that they have no feelings, or that they have no emotions, or that they aren’t interested in being treated like a nice girl. Or that they aren’t a nice, sweet girl.
Do you know why I like you? Because you’re my friend. Because you’re my best, fun friend, who I enjoy hanging out with and who I like talking to and listening to. Because you make me laugh and I make you laugh. Because it’s so easy and comfortable to be around you. Because when you get excited about a certain topic, you want to tell me all about it and make me understand it. Because you trust me to understand your thoughts and interpret them. Because you are one of the strangest people I’ve ever known. And because even if other guys are more cuddly to wake up next to, I’d still rather it be you. Even when the bowl on the table is still half-full of edamame or guacamole, and the waiter has yet to come take our drink order, I’ve already begun to miss you. You’re my favorite person to hate, because even when I hate you, I still always already like you.
I’ve never said any of this to you because I’m scared to death that doing so would destroy our friendship and remove you from my life completely, and that’s that absolute last thing I want to happen. I’d rather be miserable and jealous and sad and still be friends. Because when I am with you, I forget that I’m miserable and jealous and sad.
Image – Noah Kalina
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