Why I am no longer interested in friends with benefits

why i am no longer interested in friends with benefits scaled
Relationship heart break

In January 2019, I decided to enter into the dating game again. This was after I had been single for close to two years.

I had broken up with the guy I had been dating for three years. Actually, we didn’t break up; we just stopped talking. He dropped me at home from work, and I didn’t hear from him later that night. I decided not to get in touch with him first, and that was it. A day turned into a week, then months and boom, two years.

I don’t know if we would have worked out if I had called, but I swore heaven and earth not to be the first to reach out, and I didn’t. So that was it for us. The year was 2018…and now, 2020 was here.

I told a few friends I was tired of being single. The idea now was to mingle and maybe find love.  

I was not in a rush. Whichever came first was cool and welcoming.

Thinking about it now, I realize I just wanted to be with someone.

Then around March, a friend got in touch with good news. He has finally found someone for me. He has a friend who lives close by, was freshly out of a bad relationship, and was also ready to mingle.

The deal was simple. The guy was not interested in dating or having a relationship. No love things, no feelings. Nothing. He was ok being friends.

“Not a bad offer”, I said. “Send me his pictures.”

To be honest, I didn’t get a lot from the picture, but he looked tall, and that was enough for me.

My number was given to him, and he got in touch. The week we were to meet was his birthday; he was busy, and I was travelling to Ho in the Volta region. I remember getting in touch with him from my hospital bed at the Ho Regional Hospital.

I had gone to eat some tilapia and banku and was dying from food poisoning…But I still wanted to wish him a Happy Birthday.

Back in Accra and after escaping death, we finally met. Covid was still scary, and most companies were running a shift system with their staff.

He looked good. He spoke really well, had this kind of ‘D-bee’ vibe, didn’t talk much but appeared observant.

I will call him Kwesi.

Kwesi told me about his family. He was the only boy and had two married sisters he adored and worshipped. He was living with his parents and was working with one of the banks in the country.

He also told me about his side hustles, including manufacturing sandals with a friend in Accra.

In return, I told him about my job as a journalist, my love for reading, writing and travelling, as well as my dreams for the future.

Based on what our mutual friend had told him, I was quick to put my cards on the table.

I told him I didn’t want a relationship (too)…I also didn’t want to hear anything about love and feelings. We were to be ‘adults’ about this and agreed not even to involve our mutual friend. We hugged to seal our new friendship.

Moving from friends to the benefits

After some months of being friends, Kwesi got more comfortable coming to my end. It was usually after work or on weekends when he was free. He will either sit by me and watch me work or lie down whiles I read or do something.

Sometimes, we spoke like friends; other times, we were just strangers sharing a space.

Then one afternoon, during his usual visit, it happened. The benefit. His benefit. My benefit. Our benefit.

I don’t think we were ready for it. I remember asking him to leave after since it was getting late. We didn’t talk about it. We didn’t cuddle or anything. Just like the adults we said we were going to be, we moved beyond it.

But that was it. A new twist had been added to our friendship.

It was as simple as, “Are you home?” Or “Do you want to come over?”

It really meant nothing until it started to mean everything.

The smile that followed a text. The empty feeling after every goodbye.

At this point, I wasn’t in love. I just had somebody around me, and that felt good.

Yes, I was excited about being wanted. But I loved the fact that there was no commitment or stress.

So I allowed it, and we continued for months, gradually developing feelings without even knowing it.

Hold on, me… I meant me. I was the one gradually developing feelings without knowing it.

The day I realized what had happened was the day my heart got broken.

It was a calm Sunday afternoon. With nothing to do and nowhere to go, Kwesi decided to pass by.

Time check, 5 pm. 

After the usual chit-chat about his week and a few kisses here and there, I told him I had missed him.

I then went ahead to tell him about a friend who had asked me out on a date the previous day.

Kwesi told me to go out with the guy in a calm tone. In fact, I could go out with any guy who was interested in me because he was not.

According to him, since we were not dating, there was no reason for me to even tell him or ask for permission. He said he didn’t mind me being with anyone else, and he was not going to date anytime soon.

I am sure I have been insulted before…But that statement from him was hurtful and insulting. I felt embarrassed, belittled, and disrespected.

I suddenly fell sick…I could taste the tears in my throat. I couldn’t get it. So, I was good enough for this but nothing more?

I asked him to leave. I was an inch away from crying, and I didn’t want him to see the tears. I was angry and confused.

“Was it possible for a guy to be with a girl for this long and just keep it physical?” I wondered.

I then called our mutual friend to share my story. I told him I had developed feelings for Kwesi even though I wasn’t supposed to. I asked him if he could talk to Kwesi to find out if he felt anything…Anything at all.

I told him I wasn’t asking Kwesi to love me…I just wanted to find out if there was a possibility he ever will.

Pathetic, right? I know now, not then.

In fact, the answer that came back from my friend drove my soul into a coma.

Kwesi said his heart was too broken for him to love again. According to him, he was not ready to date…Not me or any other girl. He could be friends if I were cool with that… If not, he was okay not talking to me again.

The arrogance. The audacity. The disrespect. The coldness. How did such a person ever find love? How can such a person ever find love?

How was I okay with this in the beginning? How could I have allowed such a cold-hearted individual to touch me repeatedly?

Such heartless talk. I didn’t even wait for more. That was all the push I needed.

The small feeling I was developing for him died instantly. I told myself I would never allow him to get that close again. To love him or be with him was going to be over my dead body.

Maybe someday, he will meet someone who will understand him and be everything to him, but for me, I was done.

Truthfully speaking, I didn’t hate him. But he woke me up and taught me to be more guided when it comes to my heart.

Hard girl had almost fallen in love, and it was definitely with the wrong person.

Who would have thought?

From then, I added some new rules to my life… No more friends with benefits.

No more undefined dating. No more mingling.

No more him.

I was done going out there to look for love. It will find me when the time is right. I was also not going to mistake lust for love.

I was going for the soft life, and a broken heart had no place there. None.

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