The First Time I Saw a Boyfriend in my Best Friend

One of my best friends is a boy.

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I have been told that in any friendship between a girl and boy the relationship reaches a fork and there are two options. The friendship route, where you become the best of friends and you confide in each other and it almost becomes like the brother you never had or the one you always wished you had. Or you can choose the romantic route where your friendship becomes the foundation of a wonderful relationship. Once you choose a route that is it. There is no turning back. Because the friendship road, once taken, becomes tangled up with such indepth knowledge of one another and they become so valuable to you as the person that you share everything with that if you chose to throw sex into the mix you know that it could ruin possibly the best thing ever in your life. So you stay on the friendship road because you never want to lose your best friend.

Now if you take the relationship road then you run the risk of it going horribly wrong and being damaged by this person. You also run the risk of being wonderfully happy. It’s a risky road, but it could lead to such happiness. It could also result in such immense pain AND you may have lost out on a friend as well. Because, lets face it, it is almost impossible to be friends after a break up. I don’t care what people say, I have yet to be friends with an ex. It hurts too much. I especially do not want to deal with them moving on and listening to all the stories about the other person.

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Often the decision is made without you really having a choice in the matter. It just sort of happens and then you find yourself with a best friend. He becomes your person. Your closest friend. The guy you call when everything is going wonderfully. The person you call when your world is crumbling around you. He tells you the truth and sometimes it makes you cry, but mostly it’s what you need to hear.

He makes it very clear when he doesn’t like what you have done or who you have done. And you tell him the same. You know each other almost inside out and for all intents and purposes you are in a relationship. To the outside world you are a couple, to the strangers who see you together every day doing normal everyday things you are a unit. Even to your close friends you become a unit and if only one of you rocks up to a function the inevitable question is: “Where is so and so?” and you can respond because you know. Because you know most things about that person.

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Here is the tricky part. How do you stop yourself from wondering why there isn’t more. Why he only wants to be friends. Why he cant be more than your friend. Why he cant be your friend and your lover. You see him make mistake after mistake with women. You are perfect for him, but he cant see it. You are relegated to the friendship realm and are doomed to stay there for eternity. Is it doom? It feels like doom sometimes. Because sometimes, when you feel lonely, you want more than just a hug. But the thought of losing him feels like the greater doom.

As much as I want for this to be more, I never want to imagine a life without him. So I talk to him about the guys I am interested in and I listen to his girl woes and I give him advice and because I know him and I know his faults I can tell him where he is going wrong and I can encourage or discourage certain behaviour. It hurts to do this. But it is worth it.

We took the friendship road. I hope we grow old together walking this road. Every road has it’s pot holes and slippery sections. But our road also has an amazing view, the scenery far outweighs the discomfort. So I will keep walking it and hope that I find a man who is as wonderful as my best friend.

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6 thoughts on “The First Time I Saw a Boyfriend in my Best Friend

  1. My person is my best friend — though I think she became my best friend after she was already my girlfriend. And it rocks.

    Thanks for writing this story. I can’t help but feel a little sad after having read it. I’d like you to tell him the way you feel, but i can also understand the risk involved and how much you stand to lose.

    I hope you do find your person — whether he turns out to be this guy or another one.

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  2. I was in love with my best friend, I think I still might be. We were almost lovers but our lives took different paths, we were worlds away. I still wonder if one day we might be more…
    But for now, he is still my best friend.

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  3. Your story really struck a cord with me, because I can relate to it so well…

    I had the friendship you described… he was my person, and with him I had the conversations of my life.

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  4. Mike – I cannot see myself telling him about this ever. But you never know.
    Roxanne – having a best friend is wonderful, even if you are worlds away.
    Daisy – I feel like you didn’t finish your post. What happened? Please tell me you are still friends.

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  5. I felt like I had written this piece. The way I describe my best friend is “my person”.

    We have been to that fork many many times, because once you start being romantically involved with your best friend, even when you break up, because of that inherent relationship you have, you somehow always drift together again. Fall into the routine of us.

    And we have had issues, many of which have nothing to do with us as a unit, and it is a process of cherishing someone and wanting it to work. It is a risk I would take again in a heartbeat.

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  6. I am at this very place, right now! There is a young whom I have known since we were undergraduates. We became close friends in Graduate School, spending hours together either at his place or mine. But one day he invited me to lunch, in the one and only time he had me in an intimate embrace (he had his hands around my hips and bottom), he asked me, “Why don’t you put your feminism aside and let’s just be together?” I was grossly offended by the suggestion of leaving my feminism and on this basis, rejected his proposal.

    In hindsight, I realise that he had the wrong idea about what feminism was and I had the wrong idea about what he meant when he said I had to give up feminism. We’ve learned a lot from each other and we have the same basic idea about men and women in relationships, but that day put us on the friendship track. If I had known what I know how – in terms of how highly he thinks of me and how much he actually knows me and my dreams – I would have said “yes” to him. I love him fiercely and as you say, I would rather have him as a friend than not have him in my life at all.

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