Sex and Relationships

Someone Always Catches Feelings

An Account of Friends-with-Benefits Gone Awry

By: Dominick Wojtas


Friends-with-benefits relationships always look so good on paper.

Two lovers sharing their sensuality, enjoying each other’s company and not being restrained by any social construct. Nothing has to be Facebook official. Any incriminating gossip can easily be dodged. At the end of the day, you’re both free to establish new relationships unnervingly.

It sounds stress-free and yet the entire weight of it usually ends up on one person’s shoulders. Emotions pile up high until they reach a tipping point and come crashing down in a woeful catharsis. I swear, someone’s always catching feelings.

The night started off in good fun: two unrestrained lovers going out in the Big Apple. The bar we had chosen took inspiration from the roaring 20’s and incorporated many steampunk-esque elements.

It was the type of place where Gatsby would meet Daisy: classy enough to take an affluent woman out for a drink, and in the shadows of intensely dim light. Neither of us were affluent by any means, it’s simply good fun to get theatrical at times and play a role that you may never know. 

As we were sipping on our drinks, a notification flashed on my phone. It was new, like on Tinder. Unusual, but I had been receiving them all day.

This was an aberration, some unworldly being was sending me a message it seemed. Although it wasn’t something I was particularly hiding.

There was a righteous reason behind my blatant transparent behavior; I wanted her to be ok with this, our relationship was defined as friends with benefits. This was what we agreed on.

I was still a free man and not afraid to reveal it.

However, an altercated state is known to unleash inner-torments when triggered. This I have witnessed on a handful of occasions but only as a third party, for I had thought I had covered all the basis’s – at least initially.

My phone was face up between us when that ill-fated notification lit up the screen. In an instant, before I could even assess the situation, she bolted out of her chair and vanished behind heavy copper doors, now pacing towards the Apples rotten core (Times Square).

I followed this trail of tears down to the street corner where I managed to grab her shoulder with one hand and spin her around into my other, her wet eyes causing a tremor in my heart the instant I caught eye contact. I started: “My intention was never to hurt you, I was not aware that my polygamy was bothering you so much.” 

“Every time you receive a message, it’s as if a hammer strikes down on this stake that has formed on my heart. I have submitted to this pain without fret for some time now but I don’t know how much more I can bear.” The fact that this was articulated rather poetically had only added to my grief.

“I’m sorry but the nature of our relationship entails…” and before I could finish, “I’m very aware but feelings happen and you made me like you and I just…” her eyes had flashed a pinkish red, not an angry red, a significantly subtler hue.

She was tired and wanted to resign. I read this and booked us a night at the Evelyn.

I was not going to let her, in her current state, endure a two-hour commute home alone with her thoughts. Bittersweet was the remainder of our night. She continued to shed tears but this time she was naked and fully enveloped in my arms.

I figured, as most men do, that I could heal the emotional wound physically, so I curled over her body like a wave, my lips crashing onto her neck. Her body immediately started jerking with passion, squirming every which way. Even if circumstances communicated the impropriety of my actions her mind was in too feeble of a state to resist.

Tender that night was. Even now I think about that night often, what could’ve been had I been less of a Romeo. Intertwined, our glued lips are all but a lingering memory on nights when I lay in my bed alone now.

The next morning she vanished into the subway like a ghost. So graceful with the turnstile I fail to believe that any part of her mass actually touched it.
Her direction was uptown. My self-contempt forced me to stretch our distance even further. I fell into the nearest downtown train from where I was stood and retired my bum, sinking even lower.

Next to no one, I hugged the railing at the edge of my seat, never to hear from her again.

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