So, love, the concept.
I recently told someone that I liked them.
Someone recently said to me, “Relationships with temporary, but friends are permanent.”
Spot. The. Connection.
I disagreed with her, but I said that I agreed out of politeness. This is not freshman year anymore, and I am able to take the hint of a rejection when it is presented to me. If this were freshman year, I probably would’ve continued to pursue her because there would be some part of me that believed that I could change her mind, which would follow with the same patterns of deflection. But, seeing as through I cannot even reflect on freshman year without cringing my eyes, I have learned how to accept a rejection and move on. This was a rejection.
The rejection made me realized how detached I was from the universe defining my teenage years. Or, more realistically, my entire life. I have not been rejected by someone I was really into since the summer coming into my sophomore year. It has made me forget that getting along with someone is different than being attracted to someone. It is a fact that I had ingrained in my understanding of the world before, but now it seems like a foreign thought. In that sense, I suppose this past year had been graced by the universe in some regards. The feeling of rejection. doesn’t feel the same as it has previously. It is far less intense, which I suppose is a sign of maturity. Or emotional indifference.
This girl has told me that relationships are temporary, and I agree that relationships are temporary, but I certainly don’t believe that friendships are permanent. The two exist in similar planes; both are structures of love. If anything, relationships and friendships exist in the same spectrum, except relationships have a higher intensity. The amount of time that is spent with someone in a relationship would further any connection regardless of the pre-existing circumstances. The amount of time spent with someone in a friendship in incomparable than the amount of time spent with someone in a relationship. Relationships have time commitments. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be called a relationship.
Once the two reach a certain threshold, it is destined that they devolve into destruction.
It is like running a marathon without lubricating your nipples. At first, it is fine. When you train for a couple of miles each day, the chafing on your nipples is tolerable. It is unnoticeable. But, when the objective is the long run, as it is in a relationship, the chafing amplifies. While the chafing in the first couple of miles is tolerable, it becomes irritating as the miles stack up. Soon, the nipples become sensitive, and every subsequent rub against a shirt causes profound pain when it had been a mere caress a couple of miles ago. Similar to the nature of relationships, the longer you run without a break, the more the chafing continues. Sooner or later, your nipples bleed, and you reach you limit. That is the end.
This characterizes relationships to me. This is why I agree that relationships are temporary. Sooner or later, breaks will be taken. But, friends do not follow the same laws as relationships. There exist breaks in friendships. But the fundamental structural issues are the same. Relationships are also different than friendships in the variety of sex that is involved. It is sex, but it is not the same sex. There is a difference, yet there is not a difference. It is everything but also nothing. There is something that exists in relationships that does not exist in friendships. Is a sense of vulnerability? But not a emotional type of vulnerability… more like a sexual variety of vulnerability that revolves around intense feelings of sexual love. Who knows?
Two and half years ago, I would have thought that any friend that had the misfortune of being the subject to my affections would resolve in the termination of the friendship. Either my affections are not returned, and then the friendship is terminated, or my affections are returned, and then the friendship is terminated. The idea goes: regardless of the whatever circumstances surrounded the preconditions of a friendship, the natural course of action results is cessation. The end is either short and not sweet, or it stretches to be sweet at first before devolving into violence. Either way, so my toxic tendencies go that results in destruction at its inception.
The moment feelings of attraction arise is the moment that any sense of permanence is relinquished. Friendship dies in the arms of attraction. Once the attraction exist, it can not un-exist. It is the first domino that sets into motion a cascade of other falling domino. It is the arbitrary stimuli that leads a closed system into turbulence. It is the inevitable conflict that leads to an inevitable tragedy.
In December 2016, I wrote this about my freshman year crush:
So here’s the truth about the friend zone: You can’t be friends with someone you have feelings for.
Because you’re never going to think of them as a friend. You’re always going to always want more from the friendship—more time together, more deep conversations, more moments you can share between just the two of you. You’re going to pick your best outfits out of your closet when you know you are going to see her, hoping that she would notice. You’re going always treat them more than a friend because they’ll always be more than a friend to you.
Because you’ll never move on. You’re going to think that they’re the only person that really understands you to the level you want to be understood. You’re going to think that you’re perfect for each other, that you’ll eventually end up together, that everything that has happened up until now is just the beginning of a fairy tale that ends with a happily ever after. You’re always going to wonder what why things did not work out and what you could have done better. You’ll always try to define yourself through her and shape yourself through her.
Because you’ll always hope for more. You’ll always hope that those 1 a.m. conversations about your insecurities and anxieties will lead to something more than just 1 a.m. conversations about your insecurities and anxieties. You’ll hope that those nights when you lay on your bed imagining the possibility of a future together—just the two of you, hands held, walking together, in the countryside, down an empty dirt road, towards a fading purple sunset, with crickets chirping in the background—will be more than just a fantasy. You’ll hope that some day, she’ll like you back the same way that you like her.
But all of these thoughts, will just be thoughts. Nothing more.
God, this was so fucking cringy to read. My first crush.
There is some truth to what I said. Even though I draw on cliche images and entitled undertones, I still have not been able to challenge the inevitability for attraction to devolve into resentment. I may have not been able to articulate it at the same, but this was the sentiment that I have been trying to capture back then. I was not able to maintain a friendship with a girl that i had developed a crush on freshman year. It ended poorly, like all of my experiences with love thus far. So who am I to say that I can do the same at this point in my life? Who am I to say that I can change?
I wonder if I am still the same person as I was two and a half years ago. Quite a bit has happened since then, of course, but there seems to be some truths that have not. I am not any better at love now than I was freshman year. I still am attached to people who have no interest in me. I still hurt those who love me more than I deserve. There is very little consistency in my life, except, sadness, of course, but this is also a consistency in my life. If anything, it is the fact that I have realized and accepted this as a consistency in my life that causes me so much sadness.
Now, it seems that I have gone full circle once again. I am my same freshman self again in the same situation. Will anything change, or will it always be this way?