*Note: this is one of my more serious posts. It just kinda turned out that way. Let me know what you think about the slight change of voice.
I’m not a believer in young love. I don’t think that teenagers really know what love is. I don’t think teenagers can feel true love. I don’t believe that “puppy love,” to borrow the colloquialism, can last, except in the most rare cases. And those rare cases make epic love stories. But that’s besides the point.
Teenage romances are sweet, but short. We like these relationships to be taken seriously, although most don’t last longer than a few months. While they last, they are extremely sweet, sometimes to the point that it’s sickening. However, they are filled with constant drama.
It’s in the nature of teenagers. We cause lots and lots of drama over unnecessary things. Blame the hormones. There are conversations all throughout the buildings of middle schools and high schools.
“Hey, did you hear? Jenny and Robert are a thing now.”
“OMG really? Jenny and Sam would make a way cuter couple though.”
“Oh, you’re just jealous because you like Robert.”
This kind of gossip is heard everywhere. It’s in every whisper from best friend to best friend, every circle discussion between a group (especially groups of girls), every conversation in the locker rooms after gym class. It’s impossible to escape relationship talk.
As soon as people learn that a guy likes a girl, the pressure is all on him to ask her out. Everyone is urging him to go talk to her. Everyone is pushing him to put his arm around her. Everyone insists that they would make “the perfect couple” and that they were “made for each other.”
Eventually, the boy may cave in and ask the girl out.
If she says yes, everyone is super excited for about a week, then they figure out someone else likes someone else and the whole cycle continues. The relationship lasts for a few months, then for whatever reason, the breakup happens. Maybe her best friend decided that he wasn’t right for her. Maybe he was spending too much time with his bros and she felt like she wasn’t important enough in his life. The reason is superficial. At least one person in the relationship becomes depressed for a month, then decides to pick themselves back up and focus on something important. And the cycle repeats.
If she says no, she normally says something along the lines of, “I hope we can still be friends.” The guy gets his hopes up for a little while, realizes that it’s not worth it, and leaves. The cycle repeats when the world figures out he likes someone else.
On the girl’s side of things, however, things are a little different. I’m not going to be sexist or anything, but I will stay in the general “social norm” that the guy asks the girl out. That’s how it is in most cases, and it makes it easier to write about this way.
So, people find out that the girl likes someone. The whispers and the gossip are all around. She is often pressured to ask if the boy likes her back. Sometimes, her friends get involved and ask around. She often cries to her best friend, pining over him and sighing over the fact that he may not like her back. All she’s thinking is, “What if he doesn’t like me back? What am I going to do?” Obviously, her excitement is through the roof if he asks her out. However, if he doesn’t like her back, she’ll fall into a depressive state for a month. Sometimes longer. She’ll cry to her best friend, moaning about how much she loved him and how there is no other boy in the world like him. Then, she decides to pick herself back up and put herself back into reality and everything’s all happy again. And the cycle repeats itself again.
I speak from personal experience. However, I’m not the girl pining and sighing over a boy. I have better things to think about than that.
I am always the best friend. The one the guy talks to when he needs girl advice. The one the girl talks to when she needs to cry. The one that’s forgotten in every love story ever written. Maybe that’s why I hate romances. I’m that best friend, sidelined while a romance unfolds, always left out of the epic love story. You might say that it’s not about the best friend, it’s about the romance. However, I’d really like some credit. I’m usually the reason that the guy got the girl. I’m the reason why the girl can be happy again after finding out he doesn’t like her back. I’m the one with the shoulder to cry on when the breakups happen. I might not be an important character to the ones reading the story, but I sure as hell am an important character to the ones involved in the romance.
Being the best friend is not an easy task. I watch my friends fall in love and get hurt over and over and over again. I’ve learned from their mistakes and eventually, I’ve learned that none of it is really worth it. I go through so much heartache. Not as much as the girl who just got dumped, but I have to watch friend after friend after friend get dumped. I have to console them and comfort them and tell them that everything will be okay. It hurts every time to see a friend so upset. And it wears on me. I hate watching my friends get hurt.
But every time, I’m the one that dries their tears.