I Never Knew My First Boyfriend

In my junior year of high school I was fresh out of the closet and still confused about many things. I'd never dated girls seriously, and even though guys terrified me I was craving to know what it was like to date again. I ended up falling for a long-time friend of mine and within the first month of school I had worked up the courage to ask him out. One sleepless night later he said yes, and I had to figure out what I'd gotten myself into.

The first month was bliss, and I truly mean it. Your first love blinds and cripples you. Everything is seen and done under a shiny filter and eerie carnival music; and you don't realize how fake the memories are until when the memories are all you have left. In this dream world my boyfriend and I had it all: we were going to go to college and room together, we shared similar dreams, we wrote silly notes and good morning texts.

Everything was beautiful until Valentine's Day. My boyfriend and I were generally open people; we didn't hide our relationship, except from his mother, and even then she'd met me as one of his close friends. That February he told me he was tired of hiding from his family, and that he was going to tell his mother about me. I was ecstatic that he was going to brave persecution for me, yet also terrified it wouldn't end well. An hour later he disappeared. She took his phone and deactivated his Facebook -- she took my boyfriend from me.


When I saw him again, at school, I held him close and told him I was sorry. He told me he didn't care and that as soon as he graduated he would be done with his mom. We started counting the days until we'd be out of school, the days until we'd be together. Cracks started to form in the shiny façade of my relationship. He began to push me away; he wouldn't be affectionate towards me in public, telling me he didn't like PDA. Two months ago he would greet me with an excited hug and kiss, and today he won't even look me in the eye. He only loved me in writing and behind closed doors where he could hide me.

I continued to try to save our relationship, we made plans to hang out the night of our junior prom, only to have them cancelled and leaving us unable to see each other. He went to prom, with a girl -- without me. The day after prom he broke up with me. I didn't do anything for a week but lay in bed; crying and clutching the stupid toy he gave me for Valentine's Day. Once I'd recovered I begged him to take me back. I told him it would all be okay, that I would do everything he wanted, wait until graduation, anything to have him back. Silence.

At the end of the school year I gave him one last hug and left with him promising to call me and keep in touch during the summer; he didn't. A week before school started I saw him at a friend's birthday party, he gave me no more than small talk and awkwardness, and avoided me most of the night. He texted me that night saying he missed me, but a week into school was ignoring me again. At another party, he kissed me in the dark where no one could see. I lit up and thought I'd gotten my second chance. I didn't, he told me he didn't mean to kiss me. This game went on for months -- He would tell me he missed me, he was sorry for being an asshole, he would be better. Each time I believed him; and each time he would cast me away a few weeks later when he was done being lonely. I still blindly ran to him each time.


It was at the end of one of these games that things finally ended. We were talking and somehow the conversation became an argument; he ended up telling me that he never planned on dating me again, he'd only said all those things to keep me happy. I was flabbergasted, stunned by what he said. I even believed him at first.

What I came to realize, and what my friends saw all along, is that my ex wasn't what I thought he was. He was emotionally abusive, constantly blamed me for his own downfalls, and lied to his friends and me. While he never physically hurt me, he'd left so many emotional scars. Once I realized all of this, I became angry, not at him, but at myself, for wasting so much time on someone who never cared for me in the first place. I gave my everything to someone who only wanted me to keep from feeling lonely at night. He used me, and I let him.

This may when I graduate, I will probably never see him again. He'll go off to college and reinvent himself again, probably pretend he's straight just to fit in, and never talk to me again. I don't really know how to feel about everything he did to me, except to wonder if I ever knew him at all. Because if you think about it he was never really real with me, he was just a ruse. All I'm left with are false memories from a relationship that wasn't real to him. All I can do is hope that the next person I love loves me back, and hesitates before leaving so many scars...