A network for women by women

Love Lab

Young woman posing with old film camera in summer park

It’s harder to get over what you never had

We’ve all been there, that person, that if anyone asks you, you’re not really sure how to explain who they are to you. That person that you have spent a little too much time with to be described as ‘just a friend’ but never quite labeled as a your significant other. The almost relationship. I’m not talking ‘friends with benefits’, which can be sometimes how it starts, but it’s more than that, but again still not quite enough. It can be great, in fact it can be lovely, but when it all comes to blows, you are left broken, and here’s what I think the reasons for this are:

Closure. You just don’t get it, as a species, we crave it. Whether it be a cliff hanger at the end of a film, or wishing you went over and spoke to that handsome stranger on the train, we always want to know ‘what if?’ We need closure in order to close that door in our brains and move on, but in situations like this we try and create our own. The smallest signs get assigned a meaning in your head, a drunken text feels like a romantic gesture, a glance from across the room becomes a dirty look, we just try to find meaning where there is none. It seems ridiculous, and in the end we realise we have to write our own ending and create closure ourselves. We deserve that.

Our friends. They want the absolute best for us, so they’ll ask what’s going on, and if never gets any easier to admit that you just don’t know yourself. They are there for you when it’s no good, they are there for you when he does something cute. But really, they just hate him, because to them, you are fantastic, and he needs to just get a grip and make you his girl.

Expectations. Just because you’re not officially in a relationship, just because he doesn’t owe you anything, doesn’t mean you won’t have expectations. That morning cuddle, that time he was cute to you in front of your friends, all those hours spent laughing together, all the unsaid and implied and then nothing. Its soul destroying. This is why we feel so hurt when we have to admit, well yea, we didn’t actually date, but he’s still an ex-something. We never want to admit, we expected something more. We like to think we can play it cool, and we are totally blasé about the whole thing, but that’s laughable really. We are human, and of course it’s not fair, but that’s our fault for expecting any different right?

We only ever know what we are thinking. Our side of the story, that’s all we have to go off, and my God the hours we waste thinking about what ifs and whys. We torture ourselves, asking what the heck is wrong with me!? We never get answers, just speculation, but sometimes you just need to know that you tried, and that’s all you can do. It’s so hard to reconcile something in your head, that just didn’t quite happen, no matter how cynical and bitter and hostile we claim to be, deep down we are optimists, we like to believe in a happy ever after. And why not? That’s why we hold onto the could have beens, and run our mind in circles thinking, why were we never brave enough to say exactly how we feel, or fight for something to become of this crazy, fucked up situation.

It’s so so easy to be given an inch and to take a mile where your heart is concerned and that’s why we wind up in these situations. We need to be brave enough to ask for exactly what we want and if we don’t get it, we should refuse to settle for anything less. Learn from these mistakes and find the courage to try again, because why do we keep risking it? Because, I guess, on the off chance that maybe next time, we might just get everything we want, well almost.


Leave a Reply