My best friend is a guy. And I, on most days, am a girl.
I am not a physical person. I don’t much like hugs, and I consciously scoot away from seatmates in matatus and buses. I get squeamish when anyone but baby-girl holds my hand.
[It takes a lot to let the Best Friend hold my hand. First time it happened, I nearly shed hair!!]
But with liked and loved ones, I can’t keep my fingers to myself. I’m forever tugging locks, tickling noses and pecking cheeks. I can’t keep my hands off my man – take that any way you will.
Also, since I have more guy-friends than girl-friends (think 11:1), I am often seen walking with ‘random’ gentlemen, arms linked, hands held [uncomfortably], yapping ceaselessly and staring into said gentlemen’s eyes. I like to look in people’s eyes when they’re talking. Force of habit.
This has never bothered me, because in some ways, I have many best friends. I have my baby; I have the only two girls in the world with whom I would entrust said baby; I have my Sailor, whom I tell everything, including stuff that one probably should not tell a significant other. And then I have this best friend, what Iceman would call my BF2. Except without the bed-sharing part – that’s just creepy.
BF2 and I are both in serious relationships – with other people – so we know our boundaries. I tell my Sailor about everything I do with BF2, and so far, he has never complained. But yesterday, I had one of those out of body moments. The ones where you stand outside yourself and just watch.
I was walking with BF2, holding hands and squirming, in the CBD, in broad daylight, nothing to hide, right? But then I stepped outside the moment and just looked – really looked. It happened after a waiter commented on something we ate. See, he gave me a salad, because the microwave was broken, and when I went for a huge cookie dessert, he said salad was better, so that I can keep my shape for my boyfriend.
I didn’t correct him – I’m not sure why. I guess it’s because he was a stranger and it didn’t matter. But on the walk home, holding hands, I kept thinking how cosy we looked, how comfortable, how at ease. And I kept wondering what Sailor would think, or Mrs BF2, if they were to bump into us laughing and joking and holding hands. Creepy.
Then I thought how I would feel if I saw Sailor holding hands with some random girl. I’d likely pluck her eyes out [on the inside, of course]. Questions – if any – would come later.
In an ideal world, platonic friendships should have a simple rule – don’t do anything you wouldn’t do with your **insert relevant gender** pals. Since I generally would not shag my female friends, that should cover it, yes?
No. I can swim with my girl pals, or share a shower stall in the gym. With BF2, not so much. If, in a drunken moment, a girl-pal and I ended up doing this, we would blame spiked alcohol and move on. Again, same situation, BF2, not so much. So clearly, the whole platonic thing … different rules, different game.
But my biggest dilemma is this: how the eff am I going to tell my beloved Bf2 that I can no longer hold his hand?!