While he could clearly see an “us” after only one initial meet at the bar and this first date over drinks, for some reason, I couldn’t visualize the same result regardless of how much I tried. And, between sips of the Fitzgerald I was nursing, tried I did. After our date, Ian walked me home and said goodbye. We shared a quick goodnight kiss at the door, and a part of me was hoping that sparks would fly to prove to myself that my gut-feeling was wrong, but I felt nothing. And it made me mad with myself. Why couldn’t I get there with him? Ian was the good guy I’ve always wanted. Kind, funny and charming in a slightly goofy way. But I was missing that pull. The chemistry wasn’t there, and with every push he continued to make during those next few weeks to secure another date, I felt myself slipping away. My heart wasn’t in it.
I began to text him less and less as he continued to text me more and more, wondering if he would take the hint, but Ian persisted. My pathetic excuse texts of, “So sorry, I’m horrible at texting,” (which isn’t a lie, per say, as texting isn’t my strong suit) that I’d send days later were taken as charming. In fact, Ian took my wishy-washy presentation as a challenge—not only did he text me a lot, but I began to run into him in my neighborhood on nights out. The city is a small place, yes, but this was beginning to seem a little more than just coincidence—especially because our run-ins were eerily close to my apartment.
As the weeks passed and these texts and run-ins continued, my friends started to crack a few Joe Goldberg and Dan Humphrey jokes here and there. I began to realize that I was playing a very dangerous game. Not because I thought I was in any form of danger, no. I knew Ian was harmless. He was only ever eager to be in a relationship. I was playing a dangerous game toying with his feelings by not being honest. And if I wanted to hopefully one day be in a healthy, loving relationship, then would I get there by being a coward with someone I wasn’t even going on multiple dates with? No.
I somehow ended up on this weird road where I found myself stuck in a relationship with someone I had only gone on one date with. “Do you want to get sushi?” Yes. I always want sushi, but I don’t want the strings that come attached. I needed to end this. While my cowardice wanted to run and hide and leave him on read—because ghosting was the easy way out—I knew that if I was in his shoes, I’d want to recognize my unrequited love ASAP. The right way to go about this was to end it as soon as possible, and not over a long, awkward dinner.