Bad Boyfriends

Originally published as “LDR” (acronym for “long-distance relationship”) in the anthology Dictionary of Failed Relationships.

Bad Boyfriends
Dictionary of Failed Relationships

My boyfriend told me he won’t hold his breath for me.  Like that’s a surprise.  He’s in Chicago, I’m here in New York.  It wasn’t always this way.  I said, “Oh, yeah, okay.  That’s fine.  That makes sense.”  I hung up the phone and just stared at it.   This doesn’t have to be so serious.  It doesn’t have to be a big deal. 

I actually told him I wanted to marry him.  Don’t ask me what I was thinking.  I heard about girls doing that, on the third date spilling their guts about how their time’s running out and how they want a family and how they want a house and that they think this is love and how they never felt this way before and how you sir, you are the one, you are the love story they’ve been waiting for all these years.

I’ve never once blamed a guy for bolting.  But not my boy, not two months into it, with me whispering into his ear in the middle of a dark movie theater, me saying this shit while his face is turned to the screen, watching him smile.  Not Ben, who took my hand and held it, making me feel like it was more than okay, neither one of us really watching the movie. 

He tells me things I’ve been waiting to hear since birth.  He says all that stuff girls live for.  At night, when the long distance rates drop, I call Ben.  He says, “Crazy, crazy girl.  Took my heart and ran.  What’s wrong with you?  Here I am, howling at the moon.”  And then he howls at the moon.  

It sounds retarded, but this kind of thing, I die for it.   I kick back and put my hands behind my head, I hold the receiver between my chin and neck.  I let Ben say this stuff for hours over long-distance.  I see dollar signs in my head every hour, but I’ve been in this one-room apartment in New York for two months already and I haven’t received a bill.  I tell myself that I won’t have to pay for this.  I tell myself, “This will never hurt.”

To read the full story, pick up a copy of Dictionary of Failed Relationships: 26 Tales of Love Gone Wrong.

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