Saturday, June 22, 2024

Burning down the house

You’re lying on your slightly uncomfortable bed with him, and things start to heat up. There is a hot, swelling sensation coming about in your chest as he touches and kisses you in the places that you didn’t know could experience such pleasure.

Bing! He receives a text message and leaves your side, taking the hot sensation with him. He says he’s going to leave, and as he gets dressed, you absentmindedly think he’s going to work or to his next class. But no, he is going to see his girlfriend.

That is when you’re reminded that you are, indeed, in a love triangle. And, in a “Married with Children”-like logo, “Side Chick” is stamped on your love life.

Not too long ago, I found myself in this situation. I had come back from winter break ready to get down to business — academically that is — when I started hanging out with a friend of mine more often than the previous semester. He was attractive and found me attractive — what more did we need?
During a swoon-inducing makeout session one day, he’d casually mentioned needing to meet up with his girlfriend because she was “acting up.”

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My shock came in slow waves of irritation and anguish. Why did I tend to attract the people who were physically and emotionally unavailable or just plain jerks?

I’ll admit that there were definitely times when I thought he could be a good boyfriend. He was funny and really into good music. His goals complemented his dreams. But he had a girlfriend, and that was why she was with him — because she liked those things about him. I liked those things too, and I couldn’t have him.

Cue the incessant longing for this unavailable man.

Despite the fact that I was looking for something casual and he was the perfect candidate, I wasn’t ready to set my morals on fire.

To feel special and wanted was formidable until I remembered he was in a relationship with another person. I was a homewrecker, and I hated that about myself. I had turned into one of those women I loved to hate in the overdone storyline of so many TV shows and movies.

“No one will know,” he said often, trying to coax me out of listening to my conscience, as if he were a little red devil sitting on my shoulder.

I realized that not only was I the homewrecker and one of the reasons they were having relationship troubles, but he was too. He had already wrecked his own home, stepping out of the boundaries of their relationship to go looking for some “poom-poom” elsewhere.

I also realized I would have to cut myself off from him. I knew that despite the issues he’d told me they were having, it wasn’t really my place to step in and snatch him away or drive them apart even more. I knew his girlfriend was somewhere thinking about her boyfriend, possibly thinking that he was thinking of her when, in actuality, he had his hands on my hips and we were going to town. I felt as if I owed the girlfriend something, something as little as respect. I knew that if my current boyfriend was doing something like that, I’d be beyond devastated.

It hurt to cut off my FWB, but it was for the best. No more love triangles, or any other love shapes, for me.

Email Reggianie Francois at

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