Here is part 3 of my friends with benefits experience mini series just for you! :)
If you want to know what the ‘the cub’ means—it stands for him being younger, like how an older woman with a younger guy is considered to be a cougar.
The night of my stepdad’s funeral, I had received a phone call from a friend, MICHAEL, who was unable to attend the memorial due to taking care of his little sister. She had been sick for the past few days, even being rushed to the emergency room for having a difficulty of breathing. I got his phone call that same night when the ACTOR was down at my house. The phone call came in while I was outside with the ACTOR, my cousins, and friends. I was pretty gone by this point—stoned and drunk, probably a horrible combo, but, considering what was going on…
Most of my family was on my level as well.
I remember it was a bit past one in the morning when my I got MICHAEL’S phone call. At the time, I thought it was odd he was calling me that late, especially since the ACTOR seemed curious to why he was hitting me up late too. I handed my phone over to a friend and told him to pick up on my behalf. Apparently, MICHAEL just told my friend that he would call me back.
And then no more than six hours later, I woke up to a text message from a mutual friend, DANNY. His text message had confirmed that MICHAEL’S little sister, ISABELLE, was rushed to the emergency room the other night. I felt like shit and tried calling, but then I thought that was a bad idea, knowing that he and his family probably had their hands full. I texted him instead.
For about a good hour or so, DANNY and I stayed in touch. I was already meant to stop by DANNY’S house to pick up some film equipment for a film shoot that weekend. Ironically, it was a test shoot for a film project that I wrote about young adults and mental health and road to recovery. It was certainly messed-up timing because before I left for DANNY’S house, he texted me that he was taking a Lyft to the hospital where MICHAEL and his family were at, awaiting the results of ISABELLE’s condition and when she could come home.
And then DANNY texted me that the doctors were going to perform open-heart surgery on ISABELLE because of massive internal heart bleeding. At that moment, I remember turning to my friend who had crashed at the house the night before, saying that was odd news. Isabelle was only nine years old and the only time I heard of open heart surgery being performed on, well, anyone was older people. I told my mom and she agreed with me. Something was off if someone at ISABELLE’s age needed open surgery.
After much debate, my friend and I decided to head down to DANNY’S house because both MICHAEL and DANNY were telling me not to stop by the hospital yet due to reaching the guest capacity. Not even DANNY was able to stay in the room with MICHAEL and his family. He was waiting downstairs in the main lobby, keeping me updated on progress. And then, about halfway to DANNY’S house, he texted me that ISABELLE had just passed away. Her heart gave out. Something that the doctors had mistaken as a chest cold was more severe than it was. The infection spread to her heart, as horrible as it sounds, slowly taking her life.
I had met Isabelle twice and from both of those times, she was nothing but the sweetest and lively girl I knew. It was just a few months prior to meeting her for the first time that MICHAEL had pulled me aside and said that ISABELLE really liked me. According to him, ISABELLE never gave any of his friend’s hugs, let alone invited them to sit next to her. And boy did she stick by my side at his birthday just months beforehand, just months before both my stepdad’s and ISABELLE’s passing.
I remember punching the side of the door as soon as I got DANNY’S text, screaming, “FUCK.” My friend kept on driving. It was all sort of a blur what happened next. All I told my friend was to keep driving and go to DANNY’S house. Danny told me earlier that morning that his brother was home and to just tell him I was his friend if he answered the door.
We arrived at DANNY’S house about twenty minutes later. I was devastated and thought it was then a bad idea to be at their house. My friend encouraged me to get out of the car, offering to come with me to pick up the rest of the equipment that, unfortunately, I still needed. I knocked on the door. No answer. I rang the doorbell maybe twice before DANNY’S little brother answered it.
The CUB and I knew about each other. After all, I became closer to his brother, DANNY, and MICHAEL so they often brought him up. Plus, I had droppped off DANNY a few times at their house so I had seen the CUB a few times in passing. Well, I do not think he ever quite saw me until the moment he opened the door that morning of ISABELLE’S passing.
Out of respect, I will just say that he was unaware of ISABELLE’S passing. I had asked if he spoke to his brother or MICHAEL that morning. Once he told me that he just woke up, I had to break the news to him since he looked worried. He took it bad. I felt horrible for leaving, regardless of just officially meeting him for the first time that morning. I remember my friend suggested that we stay, but I had to get back to my own house. I just wanted to be with my mom more than ever. Thankfully, some relatives were with her.
I carried a lot of guilt, to be honest for the rest of that year. One of them being in the dating department or whatever you want to call it.
With the weeks following and going through that whole being ghosted by the ACTOR, I forced myself to go out. Often, it was painful in doing so because it made me feel worse to be around, as mean as it sounds, anyone who was not family. I guess there was just a lot on my mind and I truly felt like I did not have anyone to talk to. Not that I did not have any sort of support. I did, but I found myself in search of starting fresh, talking to someone else.
And that is where the CUB and I built, I guess at the time, a friendship. I reconnected with him at ISABELLE’S funeral. He was very sweet, immediately getting up and giving me a hug. He knew of my stepdad’s passing since I told him that morning of ISABELLE’S passing. I could tell he was someone who cares (well, he still does). He had asked how I was doing. I told him that I was just trying to hold up. He then introduced me to his girlfriend. She was very sweet. I saw how much they were in love.
I sort of knew he and I would be friends, especially when MICHAEL wanted me, DANNY, and MANNY (another mutual friend who lost both of his parents that same year) to hang out more. I do have to give props to MICHAEL for wanting us to stay tight and keep in check with each other. We would certainly all need it. I NEEDED it because not too long later, I had a fallout with someone who I thought was a friend. She was just unsupportive when it came to my stepdad passing. That was something which the CUB and I spoke about in the weeks to come.
Ironically, around the time when I was being ghosted by the ACTOR, the CUB got dumped by his girlfriend whom I met at the funeral. I remember hearing of the news by his brother, who said to not bring it up. I met with DANNY and MICHAEL at the park, where they often played basketball, but as soon as I arrived, I saw MICHAEL and CUB talking. The CUB looked all stressed out and sad. DANNY told me to not bring up his little brother’s, now, ex-girlfriend. Apparently, she had just blocked him everywhere on social media that morning with no explanation. She even did so on the phone too since it went straight to voicemail when the CUB attempted to call her.
The four of us went to a nearby Norm’s restaurant. I think most of it was to cheer up the CUB, who was still bummed out even during discussions. And then randomly, MICHAEL had to leave. He was to take DANNY and the CUB home since they lived down the street from him—LITERALLY. I forgot why MICHAEL had to leave, but he just did, before the food had arrived at the table.
The three of us hung out for a while. That, ultimately, got us onto the topic of the whole ex-girlfriend. I think it annoyed DANNY, but I could not help but ask since it felt like the elephant in the room by that point in the night. But the CUB appeared relieved, if anything. I sort of gave him a moment to just vent. He did. And then, I did too. About the ACTOR.
We spoke until seven in the morning, literally talking all night. DANNY had checked out of at some point during the conversation to go to bed. The CUB and I lost track of time, listening to each other bitch (sorry, not sorry) about his ex and then the ACTOR. We gave advice on what to do. Oddly, he was encouraging me to text the ACTOR in a few days or so, telling me that I did not mess up. At the time, I was carrying a lot of guilt regarding the obvious night of drunk texting the ACTOR a few weeks prior to being ghosted.
I was about to head out until the CUB offered for me to crash at their place, something that I had told them I could not because I personally just wanted to be back home and sleep in my own bed. No, the CUB and I did not hook up that night/morning; but I did crash in his room.
And looking back, I had always wondered if THAT is where it had all started, regardless of sleeping on the floor while he slept in his bed. It was always something I teased him about, him not taking the floor and me sleeping in his bed. He eventually told me that he was afraid of creepin’ me out or coming off too strong. This was after we hooked up a few months later.
But for the next few weeks, the rest of the summer, we talked pretty much every day on Snapchat. That following morning after he and I spoke for the first time, he sent me a message on Snapchat, thanking me for listening to him. Ironically that morning, after I woke up, he showed me a text message that his newly ex-girlfriend sent him, something about her wanting to break it off. He was upset and I remember telling DANNY to check in on him later.
I thought his message was sweet. The irony was I would encourage him to win her back IF he was still in love with her. The other ironic part was that he would tell me the same thing when it came to the ACTOR, but I saw my situation different from his. The ACTOR and I were never official or whatever. It was sort of a mess.
By the end of summer, I considered the CUB as one of my closest and dearest friends. Are we still friends today? Kind of. To be honest, I am still trying to figure it out. It is a complicated situation, something in which I hope to find a resolution to. Yeah, I do care about him deeply.
At some point, I am not sure when exactly, but in-between me trying to get over the ACTOR, who was still doing the whole watching my Snapchat stories, the CUB started talking to some chick. Let’s call her DM CHICK (you will see why in a minute). He told me about it actually and I encouraged him to go out date or fuck another girl. But instead, he was not interested in the DM CHICK. I thought he was dumb—also, this was when we were drunk so I was a bit blunt. He told me the chick was coming off too strong and he was not into that. He was looking to date, someone. And that was the first night where we sort of hit on each other, the first time when he, DANNY, MICHAEL, MANNY, and I hung out with our almost weekly movie night.
As bad as it sounds, I remember he was in revenge body mode to get back at his ex-girlfriend. At least, that was the impression I had. Somewhere during the night, I remember asking him if he had that whole ‘V’ aka the abs. He lifted his shirt—he did have one—and I remember poking his abs.
As whack as this sounds, there was that vibe between us from there on out. Although, neither one of us had quite acted upon it. Until he started making comments if I sent a Snap out to my friends, including him, basically shit that you say to someone that you are trying to get at. But I was sort of clueless at the time. I think a lot had to do with being ghosted by the OTHER GUY. So, I was having those self-esteem issues of, “Was I not hot enough,” etc. crap.
But the CUB was persistent and knew when to cool off…once I realized that one of his messages to me was, well, a bit on the romantic side. I prefer to keep this one a bit secret on what he wrote to me one late night, thinking he was drunk or stoned. He was neither, so I ended up giving him the whole, “Hey, flattered, but we’re just friends.”
Yeah, I friend zoned him. Twice, in fact, because a few weeks later he hit on me, even saying that he has been trying to get at me.
We were at the bar. A friend of mine came in from Texas. She was stood up and I felt bad and knew she needed a fun night out. Since I was seeing the CUB and DANNY weekly, I texted them and gave them the rundown of my friend being in town. We picked them up. I was intentionally trying to set up my friend and the CUB. I thought things between them were going well since they walked off to talk while DANNY and I were catching up.
But the dead giveaway was when the CUB hit one me at his house prior to leaving. For whatever reason—AGAIN—I thought it was a misread on my end. I was SO wrong as soon as he squeezed in to sit next to me at the bar booth after I brushed off one of his buddies, who was trying to get at me. But, to be honest, his friend looked too much like the ACTOR and it sort of traumatized me. Also, I was a bit drunk. The CUB placed his arms around our shoulders. I had the impression to sort of back off to give them space.
Until he kept trying to find excuses to get closer to me. So, I eventually asked if he was hitting on me to which he replied, “You’re seriously just picking up on that now?”
Then he kept drawing in closer to me. I was sort of a dick and laughed a bit, telling him that I was a lot older than him, five years to be exact. He was eighteen at the time. I was twenty-four.
He told me that age did not matter, to which I replied, “If you were older, I’d hit it.”
And then I sort of blacked in and out throughout the night. We ended up taking an Uber to his place because one of my friends was pissed at the CUB for something stupid, something about a ride issue. Plus, this same friend got mad at me because the CUB was hitting on me.
I just wanted to sleep.
I ended up passing out in the CUB’S bed. He stayed up for a bit. At some point, I woke up and asked for water. And then I fell asleep again to which he woke me up, telling me that I almost spilled the cup of water on his bed. I had fallen asleep, holding it after taking a sip. Or, I am assuming that I did.
Then, he wanted to go to bed and told me to scoot over. I still laugh at what I said to him, saying that he could sleep on the floor since I did the other times. But, like the CUB usually is, he was persistent and, ultimately, used the whole, “the floor is cold though.” So, I scooted over. Somehow, he ended up closer to the wall. I remember telling him if he tried anything, I would cut his dick off.
Yeah, we ended up flirting a bit more. I woke up with my head leaning against his shoulder, which sort of left me leaving his place like it was some sort of walk of shame. Especially when I walked out of his bedroom and his mother, older brother (CESAR), and his nephew saw me.
CUB and I laughed about it later how his mom smiled and waved at me, making me shake my head and fumbling to say, “Oh, no! We just slept. Not THAT.”
From there on, the CUB sort of got weird on me. He was less responsive if I asked how he was or would send my friends Snaps. Although, he did try and pick up on me later that fall after I wished him a happy birthday. I thought it was cute. And then, I sort would play off whatever he would message or say to me, but we were able to find that fine balance of sort of being friends. Going back to normal-ish.
A few weeks later, I finally saw him since he started to act weird again even after he had snapped a picture of him holding hands with some chick. I encouraged him to hit that to which he did not respond. So, seeing him after the whole night we sort of spent the night with each other after the whole bar incident was a bit weird. At first, I was sort of hurt because usually, he would be happy to see me. This time, he sort of appeared more distant and not interested. I tried to shrug it off until he tagged along with me to make a nearby Coffee Bean run.
I remember on our way to the car, he was telling me how he had a date for Universal Horror Night’s that upcoming weekend. Now looking back at it, the little shit was trying to get a reaction out of me aka the whole jealousy thing (considering he even snapped me a picture of them holding hands later that night to which I responded to, “Hit that;” he left me on read). I remember telling him, and I meant it too, how proud I was of him for moving on from the ex-girlfriend. They had been in touch on and off throughout those weeks because I guess she has this whole tendency of unblocking him and saying they need to talk, only to leave him hanging and to block him again.
As the weeks went on, I did my own thing and so did he. We spoke on and off and would see each other every so often. I guess you could say that we were both preoccupied with work and whatnot. So, when exactly did we first officially hook up?
It was a few days after the MANAGER and I had that semi-hook up. The CUB and his brother knew about him. DANNY would tell me after I first told him of the MANAGER, wondering if the dude was hitting on me or what, that the MANAGER was bad news. Basically, he told me that the MANAGER was just trying to sleep with me. CUB agreed.
So, when I had hooked up with the MANAGER and after that whole rejection and Instagram unfollow, I had reached out to the CUB. I told him what had happened. He was responsive, telling me that he was sort of disappointed I said that. To make matters worse too, I was at the club with a friend and my cousin while we were messaging each other.
At some point, the CUB and I ended up having one of those arguments or whatever you want to call it over messaging. He made a comment to a Snap I sent him of my friend flipping off the camera (the one he does not like). I thought it was funny, until our conversation switched to the whole, on my end, “You’ve been acting like a douche since that night of the bar.”
He sort of tried to brush me off. So, I called him a pussy.
He texted me, which he rarely does since he is one of those people who finds Snapchat as the texting aspect. His text read, “Okay. Now, you have my attention.”
Basically, I gave it to him, saying what I felt, being the lame one who pulled the whole, “We used to be close friends.” Soon, it occurred to me how I was just wasting my time, standing in the middle of a club, arguing over text. I invited him over. He asked for the address. I thought he was full of shit when he texted me that he was at my house since I run down the street to get food. I asked him to prove it by sending a picture of the front door. He did.
We slept with each other that night. It was fun, but also the start to confusing friends with benefits/friendship/what the fuck is this situation. We hooked up again a few days later for his brother’s birthday kickback. Apparently, that was the night when DANNY knew something was going on between us.
He still never asks or says anything to me.
Then, I thought it was just on my end since he and I had an argument of some sort on New Year’s Eve. I had developed feelings and told him, so you can imagine that it stung when he said he did not see me that way. So, we sort of ghosted each other after I told him that we should break it off and maybe not be friends anymore.
I could tell that hurt his feelings, based on what he responded to me. I never told him, but I had cried about it.
Even after we reconnected a few weeks later, I was still holding back on a lot, not wanting to lose a friend. And then that got complicated again when we ended up having sex in the other room at one of our mutual friend'a movie night reunion.
But I was terrified of being ‘that girl’ so I kept tight-lipped on being, well, honest with him and myself as well. Over time, I started feeling more confused about him and what I wanted, in terms of a dating or a no dating life. Hooking up with him was fun for those past three times, but I was also getting sick of being in that situation. I did not realize it until I tried to give dating a shot or just talking to other guys, but nothing ever went anywhere. Usually, the CUB would come back to my mind. That could have been through the group messages we would get from someone in the group on Instagram, Snapchat or text messaging. I guess, I missed him.
I missed my friend.
I will not lie, but things between us are still unclear, especially when he came by about a month ago after reaching out to me to almost do the whole, “How are you,” kind of thing. Then, I did the same a few days after that. I was having an off night and was trying to vent to him. It was like old times or whatever.
And then we hooked up later that night.
I do not regret it. He is fun. We are able to hang out after THAT goes down.
Come back at the same time tomorrow for part IV.