Other questions about FWB (“Friends with Benefits”) and Booty Call:
HELP! I dated my FWB (Friends with Benefits) for eight months. He treated me badly. Forgot my birthday. Gave back the Xmas gifts I bought him because he said he didn’t like them. Screamed at me on Xmas because his car broke down. And more.
He used to be a gentleman but it changed over time. I now pay for our dinner dates. I’ve helped him with his paperwork at his job so he could meet deadlines. I was over supportive. After eight months I asked him if we could be together (labeled girlfriend) and he said he wasn’t ready for a girlfriend because he was too busy working three jobs.
I got fed up, and slept with another guy, took a pic of the guy in my bed and texted it to my FWB, and told him to F off. I guess it was eight months of pent-up frustration after tolerating disrespect and constant put downs. He told me he didn’t love me, acted like he didn’t care if I dated other men. (All I ever wanted was him.) I told him to block my number if he didn’t like the texts I was sending. I went off on a rant, but he wouldn’t block me. He told me I ruined anything that we could of possibly had.
My question? What did I ruin? He never wanted a relationship, and if we aren’t boyfriend/girlfriend, I didn’t technically cheat on him. He’s been stringing me along and I guess he didn’t see this coming. I gave him everything. I feel so unappreciated and degraded, but I take full responsibility because I enabled his behavior. Now after he saw the text, he said bye and that he didn’t care anymore, and that he’s done trying; then I said goodbye too.
An hour later he rings my phone but I let it go to voicemail. Later on the same day he texts and asks me to schedule an eye doctor appointment so he can get glasses. (I work at Optometrist office, and in the past I scheduled and went to the eye doctor with him.) This time I ignored his text. The next day I got another text from him asking me to schedule an eye doctor appointment for him. Again, I ignored it. If we are broken up, then all contact should be severed. The following day, instead of texting he IMs
me on Google and asks the same question and I ignored that as well.
He didn’t contact me anymore after that. I miss him terribly, but I know I deserve better. I would just want to know what could possibly be going through his mind? Now that I am gone and standing my ground—which I have never done with him in the past because I have spoiled him rotten—do you think he is finally starting to realize how he mistreated me throughout the relationship? Please help, I am heartbroken, but determined to move forward. It was childish of me to send that pic to him, but I reached the end of my rope. I wasted eight months being strung along while he enjoyed the benefits. He treated me very badly…
Thanks for your question. We’re sorry you’re feeling so down right now. Hopefully as you have some space and time to take a look at your relationship the pain will lessen.
We’re not going to give you a hard time about your actions. You know it wasn’t the best idea to send him that text, although it probably felt good at the time. (And we totally get why you’d want to send it.) But the problem is there’s nowhere to go from there. You’re basically acknowledging the relationship is over. And in addition, when you do something like that it tends to shift the spotlight on you rather than on his poor behavior over the course of your relationship. In some ways it lets him off the hook.
But you didn’t cheat on him. At least technically. Because you’re right, there’s typically no commitment in a “Friends with Benefits” arrangement unless exclusivity was discussed ahead of time. And frankly by the way he acted all throughout your time together we don’t see that you owed him anything.
Here’s the problem with a FWB arrangement. It always seems like such a good idea at the onset. But when guys propose a FWB relationship they mean just that: casual sex with no strings attached. When women agree to this type of arrangement, often they are hoping something more might develop. And this illustrates a striking difference between men and women. Men are able to separate the physical from the emotional more easily than women, so a FWB relationship can work for them. (Although we’d like to qualify that by saying, men also suffer from this type of situation. Any self-respecting man understands he’s hurting the woman he’s having sex with even if he tries to ignore that nagging feeling. It’s not good for his soul or his karma.)
It’s very natural for you to miss him even if he treated you badly, which he did. We’re sure he must have some positive qualities otherwise you wouldn’t have lasted eight months; but from what you describe he’s got a lot of work to do on himself. And ultimately you’re right; you deserve much better. Acknowledging this is a step in the right direction.
So why is he contacting still? You’re familiar to him. And convenient. Sure, maybe he’s feeling some regret and remorse but more likely he believes he still holds some power over you and thus can contact you to help him. It doesn’t make a lot of sense maybe, but to us his actions after the two of you “broke up” illustrate even more clearly why you need to move on. A guy who’s able to flip a switch like that and transition so easily into survival mode isn’t a guy who is going to meet your emotional needs.
Our advice: Don’t get sucked back into his den. Be strong. Learn from your mistakes and apply that new knowledge to your next relationship. And don’t settle. That means, no more FWB arrangements. They don’t work.
Please keep us posted. And leave us a follow up comment and/or question. We’ll respond here in the comments section.
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