Trisha is one of my friends.
N/B : Trisha isn’t her real name. And I have her permission to tell her story here.
She’s in her mid 20’s, smart and objectively sexy.
She met a man named Ben(not his real name) for a semi-spontaneous date at the end of April
The chemistry was electric. The food was delicious. The banter was intoxicating. The first kiss was breathtaking. One thing led to another, and the next thing Trisha knew, she was going at it with this virtual stranger in the back of his car!
Now, make no mistake: I am the LEAST judgmental person in the world about this kind of stuff.
Problem is that while it felt right “in the moment”, Trisha was a mess afterwards.
It wasn’t that she didn’t have a good time. She did. It wasn’t that Ben wasn’t a good guy. He was.
It’s that she hopped into bed with him before they’d established ANY sort of relationship. I’m pretty sure she didn’t even know his last name.
So although Ben politely texted her when she got home that first night, Trisha was on edge for days afterwards, waiting impatiently for a call from him.
Friday went by. Saturday went by. Sunday went by.
With each passing day, Trisha felt a rising anxiety. What had she done? Why did she feel this way? How could she stop obsessing?
Mercifully, Ben sent a text on Monday. Predictably, he acted like nothing whatsoever was wrong. In his mind, nothing whatsoever was wrong. He was just following up on the woman he’d slept with to see if she’d like to meet again.
He asked Trisha out the following Saturday. She said yes right away. Like magic, her mood lifted instantly. All because Ben, the cause of Trisha’s turmoil, had texted to save the day!
Saturday rolled around and it was another stupendous evening.
Food, laughter, and another dose of that AMAZING sex she’d just experienced the week before. Except this time, Trisha felt even WORSE afterwards.
It’s not that she hated herself for doing it. It’s not that she blamed Ben for participating in the act.
It’s that she simply could not handle the aftermath of no-strings-attached sex.
A few more days went by before Ben’s obligatory “When can I see you?” text.
Trisha was barely hanging on, so tortured was she by her intense chemical attraction towards Ben.
When she told me about it, she insisted that this was wasn’t just sexual. Trisha really liked Ben and was open to a relationship with him.
And then, almost accidentally, Trisha let something slip: Ben mentioned casually that he never wanted to get married.
Trisha didn’t think this was a big deal. She immediately tried to gloss over that one line, and wondered why I was making such a fuss.
“Trisha, you want to get married again one day, right?” I asked.
“ So why the HELL are you sleeping with a guy when you ALREADY KNOW that the relationship is ultimately doomed ?”
After a few seconds of silence and looking at me in shock, Trisha admitted she had no good answer.
While she was still resistant, she agreed that cutting him loose was probably for the best.
Well, guess what?
Trisha didn’t cut off Ben. She only cancelled her third date with him by text. She didn’t have a conversation with him on the phone. She didn’t tell him what I told her to tell him. She didn’t tell him not to call and wish him the best.
Basically, she made it sound like something came up and she would later reschedule.
When I asked her why, she said, meekly, “The sex was really good…” before trailing off. I know that it’s probably a little frustrating to hear Trisha’s story – her lack of willpower, her lack of backbone, her lack of boundaries.
It’s probably all the more frustrating because you know you’ve done the exact same thing. Maybe not having sex with a stranger. Maybe not have someone to push you to break up with him/her.
But I am 100% guaranteed that you’ve FOUGHT LIKE HELL to preserve a dysfunctional, objectively BROKEN relationship.
It doesn’t hold up to any logical scrutiny because the relationship isn’t making you happy – it’s making you miserable! Still, you hold on tenaciously, putting yourself through the emotional wringer even though the ending is never in doubt.
From this second forward, promise me one thing:
You will never fight to preserve a bad relationship that’s doomed – no matter how great the chemistry, how awesome the sex, how much you are in love, or how much time you’ve spent. If you’re a man reading this and you’re in Trisha’s place, cut that woman off pronto.