friends of friends

You should never make assumptions about anything.

Some of my worst dating experiences have been with friends of friends. I’ve broken my rules on multiple times in those situations and every single time I tell myself I won’t do it again, but I do. Because you know what? Hope springs eternal (as said by Alexander Pope) it’s what keeps us going, the possibility that it’ll be different and better the next time around.

You already know the story about the Pharmacist Guy. I’d say 9 times out of 10, or some extraordinary high percentage, that it doesn’t work out in a good way. I’ve had one instance where it’s been okay and I’m still friendly with the guy. Dental Guy was a mutual friend of Cousin JT and Cousin DT. They all were in the same school of dentistry and Dental Guy ended up in the same residency as Cousin DT afterwards.

I met Dental Guy when I went up to NYC to live with Cousin JT for several weeks a few summers ago. We kept in touch after meeting and he eventually came down to Houston to visit me. I wouldn’t really say we ever dated, but we went on dates (if that makes any sense). He was even my date when Cousin JT married Cousin DT. The reason we didn’t work out was entirely my fault.

I was indecisive and commitment-phobic. I could detail a list of why we weren’t going to work out in my head, but I never shared that with him. I just distance myself from him gradually over time. I did apologize to him about if a year or two later, and being a great guy–as Cousin JT had told me–he forgave me. Dental Guy is quite happy now back home in Baltimore where he’s from and dating a girl he’s been with for a while.

I should have been up front with him about how I was feeling, instead of backing out with no concrete reasons. At least, I didn’t do it abruptly, not like what recently happened to me. I met Energy Guy through Tinder, but I was more keen on him because he happened to be good friends with Cousin KT. We exchanged a bunch of messages over the course of a few weeks before finally deciding to meet when he came down to Houston for some business meetings. We went on a few dates while he was here and when he was slept, I felt excited about a guy for the first time in a while. Only problem was that he lived in Austin. I don’t really like long distance (I think it’s a bad idea unless you’re already established and solid when someone moves) because it doesn’t work well. But I was willing to give this a chance because he said was in Houston often.

I saw him again two weeks later when he drove down for the day because he had a friend’s  It was like everything was fine when we were kayaking on Town Lake, but as soon as we headed back to his place, he did a 180° on me. Suddenly he didn’t want me to cuddle up next to him, he was like allergic to me. I must have had cooties.

I chalked it up to him saying work had come up and I decided I might as well skedaddle. We kissed a few times sweetly as I was departing, but what stuck out to me was that he didn’t walk me to my car. I was carrying an overnight bag and my purse. After driving up to spend the weekend with him, he couldn’t even walk me out. At least, pretend for the last 5 minutes everything is okay!

I didn’t know what to think as I was driving away. I was completely bewildered by what had happened. I had to talk to someone, or else I was going to drive myself crazy thinking about every incessant detail from the weekend. I called Miss M because she’s my go-to-girl when things get rough. We talked, we laughed, we commiserated our miserable experiences with boys and I felt so much better that I’m glad she was available to listen to me rant and rave away.

I won’t mince words or details I shared with Miss M. I slept with him and I make it a rule not to sleep with a guy unless I want to date him exclusively (even if it doesn’t quite happen that way). Until the last hour or so, Energy Guy had treated me like he wanted me to be something more. He’d called just to talk about my day. He’d also asked me repeatedly to come up to Austin to come see him. If he hadn’t, I wouldn’t have made the effort.

I suppose I could have declared my feelings more clearly, just in case he was clueless. I suppose I should confront him with how confused I was by how he was acting, which was Cousin KT’s advice. There were enough suppositions that I made one last ditch effort when I tried to call him to talk. He didn’t answer, so I settled for a text:

I don’t really get why, but you’ve been different and distant starting Saturday before I left. I wanted to talk about it then because that’s what Cousin KT recommended, but you never called me back. I like you, or I wouldn’t have come up or slept with you. Anyway that’s all I would have said on the phone. So at least I’ve said what I wanted. Have a good week.

He responded with:

We should talk soon. I’m sorry I’ve been feeling overwhelmed.

But he never called again.

I figured, that’s the end of this odd, short story. I have relearned a valuable lesson. Don’t date friends of friends expecting them to treat you with respect because you’ve got mutual friends. Subsequent experiences have only reinforced the sentiment.

Guys are going to do whatever they want to do, and you shouldn’t expect any differently.


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