It was perfect. I got the kind of proposal every girl hopes for. Trying to ignore the panic building in my chest, I said “Yes, of course I’ll marry you!” In the months to come, I would repeat the phrase that romantic comedies and ubiquitous Pinterest quotes adore – “I get to marry my best friend.” The thing that no one tells you, however, is that you should also be madly in love with said best friend. Not that they should have to.
I wasn’t in love with him. I tried my hardest. Certainly, I loved him. I noticed the absence of chemistry right away, but chose not to let that one tiny detail interfere with our perfect relationship. Everything else was so, so good. He fulfilled the list of qualities virtually every girl desires a man. He was attractive, intelligent, cultured, genuine, and the sweetest person I have ever met. We spent hours simply talking, or being next to each other while working on independent projects. That should have been my first clue. While I’m far from a lust-consumed, insatiable affection addict, I have never been able to achieve productivity in the presence of someone I love.
All the compatibility and wonderful traits in the world couldn’t cover up reality. I started to recoil from his touch, allowing only the occasional hug and a good morning kiss. I began to value our moments apart, all the while convincing myself that this was the normal progression of a relationship. Passion fades over time, especially when you spend so much time together, right? The only problem with this theory was that something couldn’t fade if it was never there.
Once, I Googled “how to be attracted to someone” and “how to know if you have chemistry.” Just a tip – if you have to Google how you feel about a relationship…it’s not the feeling you want to have. When it came time to commit to wedding plans, I couldn’t do it. The night before the deposit was due, sleep completely evaded me while next to me he rested peacefully. If you think you understand self-loathing, come back and talk to me after you break someone’s heart, along with your own.
I selfishly thought telling everyone about the canceled wedding would be the most difficult part. I was wrong. Seeing the face of someone you love dearly, yet not being with them in the way they want you, is the hardest part. Here, in our apartment, we’ve found our own special brand of normalcy. He brings me coffee every morning. I just finished folding our laundry. We are each other’s biggest fan, source of support, and Netflix watching partner. I will move out soon. Until then, I’m going to enjoy the intimacy of living with my best friend.