It was like a scene from the movies.
My friend had dragged me to her running club meetup the summer of 2016. Running was not my forte. It’ll be fun, she said. Plus, there’s a lot of hot people there.
She was right.
We rolled up to the meeting spot and as we arrived, a guy with blonde hair and bright blue eyes turned his head and locked eyes with me. He shot me a smile and a nod.
I looked back to see if there was some beautiful woman he was looking at behind me. Nope. Just me. And when I looked back at him, he was chuckling and then he turned back to his conversation.
He was a beautiful specimen of a human. Tall. Fit. A perfect white smile. Muscular arms. And one dimple and a crooked grin.
He was totally out of my league.
On the run, we got to chatting and he told me he’d just moved to the city and didn’t know many people. I told him he should join me and my friend after the run for coffees. And that’s how our friendship started.
I became an avid runner after that. Every week, we’d run and catch up and soon we started spending time together on weekends.
I thought there was no way he could be into me, so I friend-zoned myself. I’d try to set him up with whatever hot female friends I had, but he kept declining my offers.
They’re not my type, he’d say.
One evening, we were all out at the bars and this woman was hitting on him all night. Flirting. Laughing. Buying him drinks. Tossing back her luscious brown locks. But again, he turned her down.
When we were about to leave, I got angry — seriously? Why not her? She’s got to be your type.
And he finally said, because I want you.
I’m not joking. It really was a scene from a rom-com. Our epic love story had begun as a friendship and he confessed his feelings for me that night.
But if this were the movies, the film would’ve ended right there with us walking off into the night together, happily ever after. The movies never show whether the relationship actually works out. How convenient.
At first, our relationship was great. We spent our days wrapped together in the sheets. We went out together a lot, to the theatre, bars, dinner. We kept going to the running group. I met his family and he met mine. Everyone loved us together.
But then something started to shift. Every time we’d go out, I’d noticed other women eyeing him up and down, and then they’d look at me and tisk, as if they couldn’t believe he was with me.
Though he was new to the city, all the friends he did have here seemed to be women. I’m just their straight-gay best friend, he’d say. But I saw the way they all looked at him.
I stalked his exes on social media and of course, they were all beautiful.
I started to notice things about him that I hadn’t before, too. Like every time we’d pass a mirror, he’d flex his arms and flick his hair as if he was about to be in a photoshoot.
If we were out together, he’d snap a selfie for the gram and rarely took photos of me or us as a couple. I was basically non-existent on his feed and to the social media world, he appeared single.
But the biggest shift of all was the trust. The more other people started to notice him, and the less connected to him I felt, the more paranoid I became.
Every time his phone buzzed, I’d look over and see a girl’s name pop up. It could have been anything: work, a friend, who knows. But I never recognized the names. I couldn’t help but wonder if he was cheating.
One day, we bumped into an old colleague of his on the street who was drop-dead gorgeous and after she walked away I snapped and said, “Did you fuck her too?”
(Not my finest moment.)
We got into a big argument that night and everything came out. We broke up a few days later.
After the initial breakup healing period, we ended up having a conversation about our relationship. We both acknowledged that at the end of the day, we were just very different people. We still cared for each other and always would.
But what he said after surprised me. He said that the whole time he felt so lucky to be with me. That he had never met someone like me, and I had “taken his breath away” the first moment he lay eyes on me at the run all those months ago.
He said he wished I had seen myself the way he and others saw me, and not just about looks but because I was funny and interesting and made him see the world a different way.
He said that he could feel me getting paranoid, and it pushed him away. We also both acknowledged maybe we should have communicated about it.
I realized then that the only person in the relationship who felt he deserved better was me.
I do think we weren’t right for each other (there were some major differences between our values), but sometimes I wonder what could have been had I been more confident.
I self-sabotaged that relationship because I didn’t believe I was worthy of his love.
I now know that, of course, looks are not everything. We should focus on the whole person and not care about what other people think.
Attractive people can also sometimes be more self-centred, which isn’t a very attractive quality.
But I also know that self-worth has to come from within. Maybe I needed that relationship to show me where I had some work to do before I could love another person.
And for that, I am grateful.
This post was previously published on medium.com.
You Might Also Like These From The Good Men Project
|How to Lose a Guy Forever …….
|..A Man’s Kiss Tells You Everything
|..3 Things You Didn’t Know He Wants in Bed
|.12 Signs She’s Woman You Should Marry