TO: Men all over the planet
RE: Stuck in the middle with you
DATE: January 23, 2012
Do you remember when I shared my non-date-I-thought-was-a-date with Cute Guy Friend, boys? Well, I’ve realized something else: Being stuck in that grey, murky middle with you — being thisclose to you but still being at a metaphorical distance — is just plain frustrating.
Girlfriend vs. girl friend.
It looks like a minute difference, but eventually, that gap between girl and friend becomes wider and wider, and it gets harder to see straight. It’s an unspoken yearning more powerful in its silence. The girlfriend get roses. The
girl friend helps pick out roses. The girlfriend gets surprise texts at midnight. The girl friend gets texts at midnight asking for girlfriend advice. The girlfriend blushes because she’s in love and doesn’t have to hide it. The girl friend blushes because she’s in love and is trying desperately to hide it.
See, being friends with a guy is sort of like having the perfect boyfriend. He listens, gives you the inside scoop on the male mind, is both charming and flirtatious and is always there for you. The only problem: He’s, well, not technically your boyfriend. He’s your boy friend. And when your boy friend has a girlfriend (note: not a girl friend; that’s your role, remember?) and you become the girl friend in the bizarre love-but-it’s-not-really-love triangle? It’s hard not to feel just a little pang of heartbreak.
But you’re his girl friend. You. Must. Remember. That. You must always remember your place and never even think of stepping your toes outside those friend zone boundary lines. If you do, everything will come crashing down in one big mess — and it won’t be of the romantic-comedy variety.
Do you see the frustration here, boys? I’ve been the girl friend a few times in my life. It’s not fun. It’s not pretty. What’s also not pretty? These two little myths we girl friends have faced…
We love meeting your girlfriend, and of course she’s welcome to join us at the movies (substitute dinner, lunch, etc., or whatever fits your situation)
We can take the “How We Met” story once, maybe twice, but that’s the limit. We feign a smile and a nod over salad and champagne as we watch you two hold hands, but inside we’re mentally writing our grocery list, thinking about that work proposal or counting the number of freckles on her forehead. Has she had Botox or work done? You’re so in love. We get it.
We never compare ourselves to your lady love. Why would we be so insecure and shallow?
The minute I heard about Cute Guy Friend’s girlfriend, I did the only logical thing. I furiously Googled her and looked for her on Facebook. I just had to see this vision of perfection. What color was her hair? Was her skin creamier than mine? I ultimately came up empty-handed. But here’s the thing: We do it all in secret — this whole covert spying operation. If you ever ask us, we remark, “Of course not. What am I? Jealous? Pfft. Someone sure thinks highly of himself, doesn’t he?”
The real truth: Boys, we know you’re in love with your lady love. We get it. We know you’re so perfect for each other. It’s more romantic and sugary sweet than a Disney movie. I’m sure we’ll eventually realize that being the girl friend is better than not having you in our lives at all. Until then, though, let’s hope we don’t end up in a sugar coma from all those perfect love stories. xoxo