No, not the guy on the side of my actual relationship — I don’t have a real boyfriend either. I had boy reserved for cold New York nights when I felt particularly needy for human affection. Hey, no one is immune and dating is difficult. Any single girl in the city who refuses to date “just anyone” for the sake of having a boyfriend will say the same. Which is why I have a backup boyfriend, someone who can play the role when you need a night of pretending. I’ll call him Smith.
Smith is a few years older than me, incredibly intelligent, beautiful and in a band. You’re thinking, “Why the hell isn’t he your actual boyfriend?” Well, I have a long (and rather entertaining) history of dealing with men like Smith. They weren’t all assholes. Just most of them. Smith isn’t an asshole, though. He’s incredibly affectionate, mature and most importantly honest. And the sex? He’s a passionate (albeit
slightly melodramatic) artist, so it was theatrical, violent and absolutely mind blowing. His flaw? Smith is first and foremost in love with himself.
He once asked me, “What if we tried this? Tried actually trusting each other. It could be great.” To which I responded, “Unfortunately, Smith, you will never make me feel like I’m the only girl in the room. And I don’t think you have the capacity to love anyone as much as you love yourself.” “Well, should I love you more?” You get the idea. He’s the perfect Mr. Right Now. Or he was. Until he dumped me.
It’s pretty ironic how it went down. Ironic in the way that, even though it totally sucks, you can’t help but chuckle at the universe a bit. So here I am, feeling totally in control of the situation. We were cuddling affectionately after a lazy day of watching Shameless. Comfortably nuzzled in his chest, I said, “What are you going to do when I actually start dating somebody?” He snickered, “I’ll be polite to his face and make snide comments to you behind his back while attempting to sleep with you.” “Fair enough.” In an odd (and what you’ll surely deem unhealthy) way, it was adorable. Did I mention that this is one of my best friends’ older brother? We’re pretty stuck in each other’s lives. Yeah, yeah, judge as you may.
So here I am thinking I’m in the perfect situation. I don’t have to wade through all the douche bags and losers that plague the
New York City world dating scene. I can focus solely on my career knowing that great sex and something-a-lot-like-love is only a phone call away. Meanwhile, if the actual Mr. Right comes along, I’m free to be swept off my feet.
A few days after the aforementioned cuddle fest, Smith has a big show that I attended. I wasn’t surprised when he didn’t smother me with attention. He was busy flirting with everyone, working the rock star charm for all his adoring fans. I get it. What did surprise me, however, was that the next day when I was out doing a nice bit of day drinking with his sister, I texted him to meet us…but he never responded. That was unlike him. Even if he was out with a hoard of women, he always used to respond. I follow up again. Still nothing.
When I felt that inner girl crazy (oh, you know what I’m talking about) stir within me that wanted to text him something ugly, uncalled for and over-dramatic, I immediately deleted his number. Not as mature as having actual self control, but still probably more mature than had I said something I would later regret. After a few days of not hearing from him, I knew something was up. So, I email him and ask. We have the uncanny ability to be perfectly honest with each other. I didn’t mind admitting that it hurt me and I even explained the vulnerability the hurt implied.
I got the sweetest email back explaining that he met someone that had totally overwhelmed him in the greatest way possible. Fuck. Isn’t karma a big, ugly bitch? What will I do? I guess now I’ll be polite when she’s around, make snide comments to him behind her back…always tempting him.