Olivia’s best friend Joy was having a birthday party. Joy’s boyfriend was throwing a surprise party for her. He had asked Olivia to help him with planning the whole thing. Olivia had never seen Joy this happy. Her boyfriend adored her and did everything he could to make her life easier. He was the kind to send care packages because she was having a bad day. He paid for her gym membership when she struggled with weight issues and even started living a healthier lifestyle in solidarity.
Joy’s boyfriend was part of a group of four friends. Joy swore that the whole group was full of thoughtful guys. Olivia wanted such a relationship; she was tired of heartbreaks and men who had been careless with her feelings. It felt like fate when it turned out that one of the guys in the group was single. Brian was a resourceful and fun guy. It didn’t take much for Olivia to fall for him.
They met twice when she met with Joy’s boyfriend to plan the party and then spent considerable time together during the party. The party was a success, and there was so much laughter and tears of joy. Brian and Olivia laughed all night and thus began their relationship.
The first few months were filled with bliss until Olivia’s birthday, three months after Joy’s. Olivia had enormous expectations for her birthday. She couldn’t wait to see what Brian had planned for her big day. At this point, they had gone on double dates and vacations with Joy and her boyfriend, so she imagined Brian would do something similar to what Joy’s boyfriend did.
They say, “It’s the hope that kills,” and Olivia missed that memo. The birthday was on Friday, so she imagined they would celebrate it all through the weekend. She started thinking of outfits for possible scenarios. She had something set up for a part, staycation or an outdoor activity. She didn’t ask Joy because she thought Joy was also keeping it a secret.
The birthday came, and Joy received flowers, cake and chocolate at work. This was a good indicator of more to come. Brian called her later and asked her to dress up because he was taking her somewhere nice. She waited with bated breath. In the evening, Brian picked her up at her place and took her for dinner at an expensive place.
After the meal, Brian took her back to her place, and before she got out, he took out a gift bag and gave it to her. He asked her to open it, and there was a beautiful bracelet. He put it on her, and she said she liked it. Brian proceeded to wish her a happy birthday again before leaving.
He went to bed a happy boyfriend, pleased with himself. That status changed the following day when he woke up to status updates from Olivia on self-love. He knew that was a bad sign but waited to see how it played out. Joy’s boyfriend passed by his place, and the topic came up. Fortunately, he had just had that conversation with Joy, giving him more insight into the matter.
“Bro, why is your girl giving herself self-love with you around?” He asked.
“Yo, I’m confused. We parted ways yesterday night on such a good note. I’m waiting for her to speak up,” said Brian.
“I might have some insight on that. Joy mentioned Olivia expected more than you did.”
“More? What else did she want?” Brian asked.
“I think she thought you’d make plans for the weekend or something.”
“Why am I learning this from you? Why didn’t she say something?” Brian asked.
“You know with Joy’s party, I think she expected something in those lines.”
“Aah, so you’re the one setting standards for us?” Brian asked his friend as they laughed.
They had a good laugh about it, and Joy’s boyfriend asked him, “So what are you going to do?”
“I will wait for her to speak up,” Brian responded.
Olivia and Brian went a whole day without speaking until Olivia finally video-called him. He was out having a drink at a restaurant with a park view. That caught her off guard and infuriated her even more, so she hung up. Later she texted Brian expressing her disappointment and anger, to which Brian responded, “Why didn’t you tell me what you wanted for your birthday?”
“I didn’t think I needed to considering what your group of friends do for their girlfriends,” Olivia responded.
“Olivia, we’ve only been dating for three months so you can’t expect us to act like people who’ve been dating for a long time. Each relationship is also different, we don’t have to what the others are doing,” Brian responded.
“Put yourself in my shoes, it looks like I’m loved less,” Olivia argued.
“You make it sound like I totally forgot your birthday,” Brian responded. By now, he was getting irritated.
“But babe, si flowers and cake are the bare minimum. We can always go for dinner on any other day that’s not my birthday,” Olivia replied.
“You are unappreciative,” Brian responded and went silent after that. Later he told Joy and the boyfriend that he was willing to listen to what she would have wanted for her birthday, but he got angry when she sounded ungrateful and entitled. He also didn’t like that she would always expect him to do what his friends did.
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