My friend is having casual sex with Rob, a brooding boy she met at a concert. Their interactions are electric. Their chemistry is on fire.
“Why don’t boys ever want to be my boyfriend? Why is it always so casual with me?” she asks one day.
I asked her if she liked the way things were.
“Well it’s nice when he’s in town. We see each other a lot… It’s not like I have time for a relationship anyways.”
“What happens when he’s not in town?” I ask.
“We don’t talk about it.”
“So you basically have an open relationship?” I blurt out.
“It’s not like that.”
But it is like that.
Lies we tell ourselves
And that is just an example of one of the many lies we tell ourselves when we’re dating. They are the worst kinds of lies because we convince ourselves I’m okay with this.
Like I’m okay he’s still married. They sleep in separate rooms. He says it’s been over for a long time.
Unlike lies from the outside, nobody can convince us otherwise because we’re fooling ourselves.
Lies we tell ourselves are always obvious to onlookers, and always obvious in hindsight, but never in the moment.
Some other examples…
Like in college, when I convinced myself that I was okay when Matt wanted to keep our make out sessions on the down low…
Or the breakup with Billy that I had to tell myself was only temporary because I honestly couldn’t bare the idea of it being final…
or the time I pretended like I didn’t mind that Lucas tasted like ashtrays when we made out or that after we hung out he went to raves where everyone was massaging each other while high on x.
Why do we lie to ourselves?
Deep down inside, we don’t want to settle for less. We want to settle for more.
But we settle because we are impatient.
We settle because we don’t think we should expect too much from others.
We accept the way things are, just to keep things going.
We tell ourselves what’s going on is “normal.”
Just because we convince ourselves it would be worse to end up alone.
Like the character in the movie The Benefits of Being a Wallflower says, we accept the love we think we deserve.
When it’s over
But isn’t it amazing that the moment it’s over—seriously over—like Friend’s finale kind of over–that’s when all the self-fabricated lies come crashing down?
And in the midst of all the rubble, we are free again.