Dear Facebook: You need to offer more options for “Relationship status”.
Honestly, I spent the best part of 15 minutes debating which one I should choose. The closest one there is “It’s complicated”, but in my case that’s like saying the Grand Canyon is “a big hole”. What I really need is something like “You have no freaking idea how complicated it is!”
So how complicated can a new relationship be? Well, let me tell you a story.
Angie and I first “met” on Twitter a few years ago. (She was living in Canada at the time, so I doubt we could have met any other way. The chances of us bumping into each other on the street were highly remote, no matter how much Google Maps screwed up.)
I can’t exactly remember how we met (though I’m guessing it was probably a conversation about some aspect of writing), but she quickly became one of my closest friends. Hardly a day went by when we didn’t chat to each other. And as time went on, we found we were sharing more and more about ourselves.
And there certainly was a lot to share. Things got pretty tough for both of us—failed relationships, work driving us insane (okay, more insane), and life generally dumping its crap on us. But we were always there for each other, offering advice, a much-needed laugh, or just the chance to talk to someone who would listen.
Our friendship became stronger than ever. But that’s all it was—friendship. And that was just fine by us. After all my futile attempts at online dating I’d pretty much given up. And Angie was in the throes of escaping Canada to start her new life in the UK.
But one afternoon while chatting on Skype (okay, it was afternoon where I was. I’m still getting used to the whole time zone thing), we realised that what we had might me more than just a great friendship. The chats became Skype calls (thank goodness for the Internet!), and before long we realised we definitely had feelings for each other.
But as I said, we lived half a world away from each other and had never met in person. So the question remained: could we be just as close in real life as we were online?
And so we decided to meet up to find out—one way or the other. So I arranged flights to the UK, arranged more flights when QANTAS grounded all its planes, and we finally got to meet each other face-to-face.
We were more than ready for it not to work out. We promised each other we’d stay good friends, no matter what. After all, how could it possibly become anything more than friendship when we lived so far apart? We’d meet, have a great time together, I’d fly back to Australia and we’d stay good friends. Easy.
So it kind of took us both by surprise when we realised the chemistry was definitely there.
And now we face a world of problems—literally.
There’s no way I can leave Australia. I want to see my son grow up, and so moving simply isn’t an option right now. And Angie has just established her new life in the UK and enrolled her son in school, so she’s pretty much grounded as well—at least for the time being.
Logically, this is one of the most stupid ideas we could ever come up with. And if it was any other couple we’d probably be telling them they’re mad. But we’ve grown so close since we’ve been together we’ve decided “to hell with logic” and will try and make it work anyway.
So now, my Facebook status reads: “In a relationship”.
And I couldn’t be happier.