Friends with Benefits

“Just tell him about your depression,” Dorte said.

“I’m not telling him anything of the sort,” I replied. “I’ve only seen him three times. He doesn’t even need to know what I look like without make-up yet.”

I’d had a few days of feeling down, my Staceyness was a bit more of the Slater variety, so I needed to get out of an up-coming fourth rendezvous with a guy I’d been dating. I couldn’t tell him that I was washing my hair because I didn’t actually want to cancel the date, just postpone it until I was chirpy again à la Stacey Solomon. Tricky. Which is why I’d phoned Dorte for some wise advice. I didn’t like the advice she was giving me though.

This happened BTB (Before the Blog) when not even all my friends were aware of my ‘affliction’. I certainly didn’t want to be announcing it to a new man. I only wanted him to wonder about when I’d finally be in the mood, not what mood I’d be in.

I decided against taking Dorte’s advice. I stuck my fingers in my ears, said ‘la la’ and re-arranged the date with no mention of the d word. Before that night came around I was out having a drink with a friend and bumped into afore-mentioned guy. Quick chat and off he went. Then he sent me a text informing me that I ‘looked good’…and…wait for it…that my ‘friend was hot’… Oh yes. I was mortified. My hot friend was mortified for me. Sensitivity clearly wasn’t his strong point. I was glad that the most personal thing I’d told him was that I don’t like mushrooms.

After a few months of bemoaning men and obviously not going on a fourth date, I was ready when a new bloke came down the love lift and into my life. Fortunately I didn’t even have to think about telling this one. He didn’t want a relationship, I didn’t want a relationship. We were just friends with benefits of…er… friendship. I wouldn’t have to inform him of any personal matters. Not only that but he lived in Scotland. I live in England. We wouldn’t see each other very often. He’d never have to know.

Until he was visiting me for the weekend that is. My brother was setting up my blog for me and had called with a query. Realising the conversation about dogs and fonts might have sounded a bit strange,  after getting off the phone I explained that I was going to be starting a blog about depression. I said it nonchalantly as if I was just telling him I don’t take sugar in my coffee. I may even have said that I had depression, rather than have. I may even have believed that was the case.

It didn’t seem to worry him and we carried on happily. Very happily in fact. We just weren’t doing well at the friendship thing.

I have wonderful friends.  I camped out overnight and was first in the queue when friends were being handed out. I like them a lot. And they like me too. But we don’t message each other all day, every day. We don’t phone each other to say goodnight. We don’t count how many sleeps it is until we see each other next. Me and my friend were doing those things though. We had officially moved out of the friend zone. It didn’t matter though cause I liked him.

The weird thing with depression, is that when you are feeling good it’s hard to imagine that you ever felt bad, or will again. I was so happy that I started to wonder if I’d been cured.

As if.

They don’t call it the black dog for nothing. A black dog with a bone. It doesn’t give up. I hadn’t seen mine for a while but it came back barking loudly,  insisting I play ball…

Don’t cha wish your girlfriend was a freak like me?
Don’t cha?
Don’t cha?
The Pussycat Dolls – Don’t Cha ft. Busta Rhymes


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