Okay. So this is not a poem. The writing prompt project asked me to write about how I feel when someone doesn’t love me back.
I can pin point this to an exact moment. Grade ten, I was 15. I was in love with Kris, my best friend. I met Kris in middle school and we became friends one day when we walked home together.
It took me one year to realise I had a crush on him. It took me another year to get up the courage to tell him.
Kris had stayed home one day because he was sick. I think he was really just cutting class. Lia Kim and I had been talking about how much I liked him.
So we went to see him. And we were in his kitchen when I told him. I couldn’t even look at him when I said it.
Kris was so calm. He didn’t miss a beat. He said it was better if we stayed friends because we had such a good thing going as friends.
It killed me. I felt like I suddenly could no longer face the world. I don’t know what I had expected him to say. Perhaps I was hopeful? I had so many fantasies of how a life with Kris would be like if we were both in love with each other–but in that one instant, all that hope was gone.
Then came the self doubts. Why didn’t he want to be with me? He had told me he thought I was amazing once. He looked me straight in the eye and said it, so why didn’t he want to be with me?
It took me a whole semester to recover. I kept to myself and stopped eating lunch with everyone. I literally could not face anybody.
At that time, I didn’t understand how attraction worked. I thought that if two friends thought of each other as amazing, then naturally they should be together, right? I was clueless about chemistry. I don’t think I even felt a sexual attraction for anyone at that point. I had girlish crushes, but anyone who’s felt sexual attraction for another person would agree that a crush and sexual attraction are not the same thing.
Kris really liked this girl, Jocelyn. Back before I spilled my guts and got shot down, I always asked him why he liked her. His answer was always, “she’s got big boobs.”
To me, Jocelyn was a superficial fob who wouldn’t really be friends with us if she wasn’t so foreign. She wasn’t funny, kind, or amazing (all traits Kris had attributed to me at one point). Why did having large breasts suddenly top all of those things?
Now that I’m a woman in my thirties, I understand completely why Jocelyn’s breasts won out over any other connection for a 15 year old boy. I wish this was something I could have learned much earlier in order to save the months of hurt and isolation I put myself through. Still, I’m glad I learnt my lesson, anyway.
Unrequited love. If unchecked, it becomes an obsession.