Have you ever had that guy friend who makes you laugh when you are having the worst day possible? Who knows your favourite ice cream flavour and can brighten up your dull day simply by giving you that goofy smile in the middle of a boring class?
Yes? Then I guess you won’t find this story completely absurd. I met him in college, we were in the same class. Initially, we started off as acquaintances but in just a couple of days we developed a fondness towards each other. We’d hang out in between classes and hitch a ride to the metro, any time spent with him was actually super fun!
We both enjoyed each other’s company and often forgot about the trivial issues of life. Back then I was dating somebody, so for me it never started off as attraction, it was just pure friendship. Our classmates would tease us quite a bit considering our tendency to spend so much time with each other. But to us, it didn’t really matter, we’d call them “narrow-minded” and laugh about how he was not my “boyfriend” but my “boy friend,” the tiny space making all the difference!
To be honest, I don’t know when I realised that I had feelings for him that moved a little beyond the restriction of friendship. Maybe it was that day when he accompanied me all the way to my home because I was feeling sick or maybe it was that day when he hugged me for hitting the football the right way (with the side of your foot, not the tip) or maybe it was all of those moments, every single one of them, when he understood my jokes and looked at me like he knew something that others did not.
All I know is, by the time our graduation approached, three years later... I knew this was more than just friendship. Fun fact though, both of us were now dating two different people.
After our farewell after-party, we were both hitching a ride with our friend till the metro and we were waiting near the car when he said “You know, I always wanted to tell you this but I never got the right time and now we are graduating so I never will get the right time.” I looked at him standing under the street light and instantly knew what was about to follow, “What do you want to tell me?” I asked. “I like you. I have always liked you, right from the very beginning. I mean we are both dating other people now but I want you to know that I really like you.”
“Well, you know what? I really like you too. I have always liked you, right from the very beginning.” I replied. We both smiled at each other, “Well this is just epic bad timing then, huh?” he said. “Yeah, let’s just pretend this never happened and go back to what it was?” I asked. “Deal!” he exclaimed.
That night I lay awake and kept wondering why? Why did we decide to let it go? If there were feelings then why not explore them and see what happens? On the other hand, though, it was not like he or I did not have feelings for the people we were dating, it was just that this comfort zone we had created between ourselves looked very tempting.
After one whole week of twisting and turning, I finally figured out why we didn’t go down the whole dating path. Let me tell you why - friendship is a feeling, right? It’s a warm fuzzy feeling, much like love and often it is easily confused with the latter. Sure, maybe we were in love but there was a chance that maybe we weren’t too. I think, deep inside both of us wanted to keep the warm fuzzy loving feeling alive without having to take that chance and find out whether it was real at all. It did kind of made us cowards but who cares? I’d rather have my guy best friend by my side at all times than take that chance, no matter how little, to lose him.
So there it is, the reason why I never dated my best friend...the one that I probably should have. But you know what? I don’t regret it. I agree with the fact that I should have dated him and when my friends tell me we’re “fools,” I agree with that too but we are two fools who will have someone to lean on, no matter what.