Being friends with benefits broke my heart. It’s my own fault. I had zero interest in a casual relationship but I agreed to one anyone.
I agreed because my self-esteem was low. I was upset you didn’t want to date me, but I didn’t think anyone else would want to date me either, so I settled.
I entered into an arrangement that was guaranteed to end poorly. I knew I was making a mistake at the time. My friends warned me to stay away from you. My common sense warned me to stay away from you. But none of those warnings mattered.
I liked you. You made me happy. So I tricked myself into thinking sleeping with you would be almost as good as dating you. After all, I would still get to spend time with you. I would still get to kiss you. And maybe, maybe, if I played my cards right you would change your mind and fall for me.
I was playing a long game. I thought sticking around long enough would help you see how much you liked me. I thought you were going to wake up one day and realize I was meant to be your girlfriend all along.
I was wrong.
There were times when it seemed like we were on track to a relationship, but then you would pull away again. We would have deep, meaningful conversations. We would look at each other like we were newlyweds in love. And then you would break the spell by reminding me you were not interested in a relationship. You would ruin the magic in my mind with the truth.
I came close to tears whenever our nights ended and we went our separate ways, because I had no idea how much longer I would have to wait to see you again. I came close to crying whenever you kept me waiting for a text, because my imagination would torture me with thoughts of what you were doing without me. I came close to crying whenever you stopped me from holding your hand or kissing you in front of others because you thought it would cross some kind of line.
Being friends with benefits broke my heart, but it made me better at pretending. I could never tell you how upset I was because it would end our arrangement and the last thing I wanted was to lose you. So I pretended to be the cool girl without a heart. I pretended you meant nothing to me. I pretended I was perfectly fine kissing you without a label, sleeping with you without significance.
Being friends with benefits broke my heart. It taught me how dangerous it is to enter a one-sided relationship, a relationship where only one person is getting what they need.
I am never going to make the same mistake again. I am never going to lower my standards because of strong feelings. I am never going to let someone have me temporarily when I am searching for forever.