A short story about a couple’s relationship. Eloise and James had been together for five years. Their relationship, like many, had started out a little rocky, but over the first three years had blossomed into something stable and enjoyable.
They were planning on getting married and looking into their first mortgage. But then life started to take a turn. Somewhere between moving in together and getting started combining finances, the spark just died. They didn’t feel anything any more.
The first thing they noticed was that their sex life all but disappeared. Whilst they had always been deeply passionate for each other before, soon they found themselves having sex once a week, once a month… Eventually three months would pass and neither of them would feel it.
Eloise used to be annoyed by James masturbating or watching porn, but soon they would put porn on and deal with their own business rather than make love like they used to. Morally wrong? Maybe.
Next, they found themselves growing disinterested in each other as human beings. James started to spend most of the day with his friends, to arrange holidays without her. Eloise started telling her thoughts and worries to her best friend instead of her partner. They didn’t know the details of the other’s mind any more.
But they didn’t really care. It was like nothing had happened. They were two people living together, living near each other rather than with each other.
As the next two years went by, they stuck to their plans, to the combination of finances. But their desire for children and for each other faded. What started out as a dream became a chore.
Open Relationship To Find Inspiration?
Eloise found out about open relationships online. She would never have thought of having one before, but now the idea seemed so inviting. She suggested it to James and was surprised to find he’d thought about it too.
They agreed to discreetly meet other people online and see where it went. Best case scenario they would have a happy, open relationship. Worst case scenario they would split up. They were just grateful they hadn’t married or had children yet. They felt a little bit weird, maybe because the morals they have as human beings. But they went on anyway.
It didn’t take long for them to both find someone they liked on a blind-dating site. The site selected new partners for them based on their interests, lifestyle and location. They kept the interactions private from each other and agreed not to meet people based on looks, but based on compatibility.
Eloise met a local man who was intelligent, interested in the films and books she enjoyed and a good listener. Or reader. He would read her messages and reply promptly.
He would really understand what she told him. He was funny and she found him very attractive. James met a woman who was around the right age for him, beautiful, funny and well-mannered. She treated him with the consideration and delicacy he felt his life with Eloise lacked.
She was sweet and enjoyed his jokes and kept the conversation going at any cost. She even hinted at the naughtiness they could get up to together in a way that reminded him of his and Eloise’s relationship at the start.
Having got to know their new partners and found them fairly attractive, they agreed to schedule their dates for the same night. Thursday the 12th. That way they would both be out and nobody would feel alone or jealous, in theory. Both of them were incredibly excited and went to suggest the date to their new flames.
But when they logged on to exchange some images and the date location, Eloise saw her man was suggesting the same date and place as James wanted for his date. She suggested her location, to avoid a mix up. Then, the revelation hit them both. They had been talking to each other all along.
All the listening, flirting and passion Eloise thought James didn’t have in him was there for her to see. All the affection, naughtiness and humor James thought Eloise had lost was right in front of him.
Unknowingly, they had not only given each other exactly what they were missing all along, but their eyes were now opened to how cruel and cold they had been to each other. They saw how distant they had become and how unnecessary it all was.
Eloise cried on James’s shoulder after finding out. James was shocked. But after a few hours discussing everything, they agreed they would try harder to make it work. They would give each other what they deserved.
After all, they were perfect for each other.
They fell in love again.