The biggest problem about living 50-metres away from a bar, is that, similar to a moth to a flame, my boyfriend is attracted to the scent of a beer keg. He finishes work at midnight, rolls into the bar for 1am, stumbles out at three and wakes me up five minutes later with a burp. The next day I awaken to various trails of crisps across the apartment and something grotesque groaning from under the duvet.
Not so long ago, we would go out of our way to see each other, regardless of happy-hours and buxom bar maids. Dating a chef isn’t the easiest when you work office hours, but I’d quite happily stay up until after midnight to see him and he would’ve declined his free staff drink to hurry home. Not so anymore, now I can’t wait to get into bed, while he’s on first-name terms with the bouncer. Three years on and we’re well and truly out of the honeymoon phase. Granted, we did well, it lasted longer than most but I can’t help but notice that I get more excited about a well brewed cup of tea than I do about a tired, sweaty chef.
Initially the relationship rut is a little bit disturbing (and a whole lot depressing) but the first step to recovery is acceptance. Or you can split up and go in pursuit of another relationship high. I decided to pretend we’d split up and see how it felt. I lasted two hours before I text him to say I’d just seen two pigeons fornicating in a tree. Then I pretended we’d split up and researched what kind of one-person studio flat I could get for myself. That was before I remembered I’m scared of the dark, burglars, ghosts in the bathroom mirror and being cold in bed; all of which are solved by having a big, burly boyfriend.
Eventually I came to the conclusion that I didn’t actually want to break up and perhaps the relationship wasn’t too bad after all. For one I get to sleep more. For the first time in three years I’m getting more than five hours sleep per night and my eyes no longer look like a basset hound’s. And then there are the positives from a relationship rut. The comfortable, ‘I can do embarrassing stuff and you’ll still love me’ positives; the stupid in-jokes, the guarantee of texts that aren’t from your mum or O2, the acceptable snort laughs, the make-up free face and… brace yourselves because this is about to get x-rated… the saying of what you do or don’t want in bed, minus awkward moments, fake moments or worse, totally unsatisfying moments.
Oh and being in love, that’s nice too.
Yes, the rut is good. Of course it lacks the super-sized buzz of a new relationship but it can have its perks. Who else am I going to text the next time Roy (that’s what we’ve affectionately named him), the crazy homeless guy on my bus to work says something crazy? No one knows Roy like we do, and no one else would care… or even pretend to.
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