Swedish girls are everything what you fantasize about.
They are tall, beautiful, blonde (although artificially blond dyed hair), busty, athletic, and strong.
It was me on a treadmill, laughing till tears rolled down my face as my friend Deborah pounded up and down beside me, cracking one joke after another. Over endless cappuccinos we talked for hours about everything and nothing.
We knew each other inside out and I was convinced we'd be friends forever.
So that's why, looking back, I felt the most uncomfortable sensation - a mixture of huge happiness and a deep ache of loss. Almost seven years ago, I ended our friendship after I realised she had become way too needy.
A study this week by sociologists at Manchester University revealed that women find breaking up with a friend even harder than dumping a lover. We all know that romantic relationships come and go.
Then she started ringing every single evening to offload.
I'd put the phone down after two hours, completely drained. Nick would sigh every time the phone rang and I disappeared for an hour or two, only to re-emerge, emotionally shattered.
It’s part true, more Swedish women are interested in foreign men than they are in other Swedes.Very deliberately I stopped returning Deborah's phone calls quite so regularly. So finally, just after New Year 2003, I sent Deborah an email explaining that I could no longer be her friend. I didn't want to hurt her but I knew I owed it our friendship to be honest.I wrote that I had tried my best to help her and that I was terribly worried by her drinking and her sexual behaviour.Newly divorced with two young children, I was single, free and happy.But, with no partner, I was particularly open to finding a new friend to share things with. With two children I adored, I could understand how loudly her biological clock was ticking.