Dating has never been my skill. I have had plenty of first dates and some second dates. Beyond that nothing has ever really happened of significance. Just not my strong suit. I spend most of my time in the friend zone. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind the friend zone. I am actually very happy and comfortable in that zone. Sometimes ending up in the friend zone can be a gift. Sometimes the guy you thought was so perfect for you ends up being a huge jerk face. Having the separation can give clarity to the situation. Sometimes you end up with a really great friend. The problem isn’t the friend zone. The problem is the dating friend zone.
When I was in high school I met this guy, named Brody*. Brody had all the qualities most girls would desire in a boyfriend. He was funny, kind, attractive, had strong morals, and came from a wonderful family. He was polite and genuinely friendly to everyone. He checked all the boxes for me. On paper we made sense, but we had a major problem. He was not attracted or interested in me in that way at all. When I say at all I mean AT ALL. Maybe I should have thanked Brody for being so honest and upfront with me. He wasn’t trying to hurt my feelings he just wanted to make sure I knew where the line was drawn. With lines drawn, I thought I accepted this fact and we became good friends.
Eventually the crush and infatuation subsided. We settled into a comfortable non-relationship, relationship. Meaning, we had all the characteristics of a relationship without having “all the feels.” Or at least I thought. We talked everyday. If we didn’t see one another we texted and talked on the phone. Like, actually TALKED on the phone. If facetime had been a thing then I am sure we would have done that as well. We talked about everything and every topic. We argued and then apologized (well, I apologized to him) We spent time together, I met his family and he met my family. It was comfortable.
One day it all stopped. Brody met a girl. I was invisible. So many unreturned calls and texts. I found out about their relationship on Facebook. I was hurt. My feelings were hurt. It was almost like I was mourning the loss of our friendship. Thanks to Facebook I didn’t have to miss a moment of their budding romance. They say time heals all wounds. But what if you just settle into a new normal? What if those wounds aren’t really healed? I settled into the new normal and went about my life. Eventually Brody and his girlfriend broke up and Brody was back. I wish I had called him on his actions then, but I was too excited to have my friend back. So we fell back into out old normal. Like nothing happened until the same thing happened……again.
For a few years Brody and I had two modes. We were either best friends or strangers. There was no in between. I unfortunately allowed the cycle to continue. I remember just being so excited when he would come back and we would be friends again. I was too afraid to say anything. I was too afraid I would seem overly attached or he would find out how I really felt about him. Fear kept me in this vicious cycle for years. I dated a little, but there was a small part of my that always held out hope that he would wake up one day and realize we could be something.
Brody never realized what I always wanted him to. One day I woke up. I realized I had wasted all of this time hoping for something that was never going to work. Even if he had decided that I was it for him he was no longer it for me. Not because I found someone else, but because I found myself. I found that I was wasn’t someones second choice. I am not a “filler girl” meaning I am not here to fill someones time until someone else comes along. This doesn’t just have to be for romantic relationships. Any relationship that makes you feel like you are their second choice is not a healthy one. Know your worth. Know your value. God didn’t make you to be someones filler girl. So don’t settle and definitely don’t settle for a Brody.
*Names have been changed to protect the individual. He may have been dumb, but Brody is not an awful person*