Heartbeat: A Long Way Down
Shared by Scarlett Jones.
Picture this: 17 years of being best friends, always being teased about being a couple, and finally doing something about it – what could go wrong?
Well, let me answer that…EVERYTHING.
Rewind 2 years and my best guy friend, who will be addressed as James for this article, confessed his love to me. It was along the lines of “I have always been there for you”, “you don’t appreciate me”, “we are only friends because I love you”, “you put no effort in”, etc. Needless to say, I got up and walked away, mainly because I burst into floods of tears about 30 seconds after this had happened. And I couldn’t bring myself to face him after that.
6 months of silence.
I got home for Christmas, and we both got a bit drunk at a party. We sat for 30 minutes on a sofa, crying our eyes out, me AND him, and trying to sort everything out. That was the first time I had ever seen James cry, and this was proper, aggressive, uncontrollable tears. He was seeing someone at the time, so we went back to being best friends.
But things were never really the same. I could always feel that there was some kind of awkwardness or tension or something between us, but we both did our best to ignore it.
1 year of tension.
So I’m home the following Christmas, and we both got a bit drunk at a party. Can you see a pattern? But this time it ended up very different. We went outside to sit on a lounger and look at the stars, and somewhere in between talking about life and gazing at the heavens, we both turned our heads and kissed for the first time. Was it fireworks? Was it horrible? To be honest, I can’t remember, so I’m guessing it wasn’t all that amazing. But I can say this, it was special, simply because it had been such a long time coming.
I had 2 weeks left at home before going back to school, and things escalated pretty quickly in that time. It got to New Year’s Eve, and after a tipsy but great night out, we stumbled back into my friend’s bedroom. Our whole group of friends knew it was going to happen so essentially chucked us down there, but we were best friends and kind of having a thing and it was in the heat of the moment, and we both had our first time that night.
I went back to school 3 days later and tried to keep in touch as best I could, just because I knew that that was a big step for both of us, and I thought that it would have changed something. But no.
4 months of me messaging him and him not responding.
I’m home for Easter, and invite him over for dinner. I cook an incredible fish dish, but I can feel that something is wrong with our table conversation. We finish dinner and sit down on the sofa to chat and all of a sudden he gets a phonecall from a friend asking him to pick up their take away. And he just goes.
Next day he messages me and asks if I want to hook up again, and I say that he’s going to have to work for it, simply because he was such a dick the day before. And then all of a sudden he goes quiet.
4 months pack of exams and stress and just utter silence.
Home for summer and we have a chat about what we both want, so we agree on fuck-buddies but exclusive fuck buddies who are also best friends, so basically a relationship without the label. We establish that neither of us has slept with anyone since Christmas, so it’s still completely safe. And I really begin to see him again, to see who he is. I start to crave his stupid laugh, the strange spring in his step, the small curls in his hair. It all seems to being going great, until dinner one night with one of my best girl friends.
According to her, they’ve slept together twice, and with the explanation she gives, it’s completely his mannerisms and things he would say, and she and him have history, and it all just seems to add up. And although I love her, it is something she would do – she kind of gets around. So he’s lied to me.
So I speak to him about it, and he outright denies it and calls her “crazy” and says that she “has issues”.
I weigh the likelihoods, and I just couldn’t see what she would gain by lying about having slept with him, as it puts her in a worse light. She has nothing to lose, whereas James has everything.
So I ask him about it once more (over message as he’s gone off on some random and far away vacation), and he says that he doesn’t have to “defend himself” against my “eager accusations” and says that he “doesn’t understand” the logic of my friend’s explanation. He essentially refuses to give any explanation to my questions and simply denies having to “explain himself to me”. So I said “okay then walk away”, and he says “okay can do”.
Silence since that day.
Any opinions on the whole situation, anyone? I cannot even begin to explain how angry I am at him, but at the same time he is my best friend, but I am just SO sick of him.
Do I try and reach out? Do I assume that his denial means he is accepting the fact that he can’t get himself out? Is there a possibility that I am wrong?
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