In the tangled web of love, our first romance often leaves an indelible mark. In this article, individuals from various walks of life reveal the unexpected reasons behind the demise of their first loves, shedding light on the twists and turns that shape the tapestry of our romantic journeys.
She Threw Her Life Away
“In college I met a girl at a mixer named Junie. We were both majoring in Business and I recognized her from one of my afternoon classes. I finally summoned up the courage to just say, ‘What’s up?’ We instantly hit things off and we quickly started seeing each other pretty much on an every day basis. I quickly realized that she was a little on the wild side, but at the time we were enjoying our new found freedom as young adults so it didn’t bother me none. As we got closer to graduation, I realized I had to start getting more serious, but Junie was always looking for an opportunity to party. Almost every time we were together, she was overcoming a hangover. When her grades started slipping, I tried to help her by tutoring her whenever I could. Eventually, I ended up doing her course work on top of mine. I know this was stupid of me, but I was just happy to have a girlfriend. It was was after we graduated when I landed an internship in the same state as the university, but Junie decided to go back to her home town to look for a job.
She begged me to come with her so we could start a life together, but I was so grateful for the opportunity with the internship that I turned her down, promising that I would always be keeping in touch. This is where things slowly went downhill.
We were in a long distance relationship for the longest time. It was a challenge being so far away from each other, but she was the first girl I was ever serious about. I bought plane tickets to visit her with every given opportunity I had, but Junie never did the same for me and constantly made up excuses. Of course doing this was burning a major hole in my pocket, so at some point I had to cut back on flights. Each time I did see Junie, she became more and more distant, but I pretended not to notice simply because I was young and oh so dumb. The last physical time I saw Junie, I noticed how she had lost weight and started looking extremely old for her age, but I thought it might have been due to stress because she hadn’t found a decent paying job yet. Whenever I would call her, sometimes days would go by before I got a call back. Letters from Junie became scarce, but once again, I had excuses for her to satisfy my own suspicions. I that perhaps Junie had found a job and was super busy adjusting to her new responsibilities.
Little did I know, Junie had a ‘job’, just not one I or anyone else would have ever imagined.
The truth finally came to light when one of my classmates sent me a notification instructing me to check out the list of people that had gotten arrested the night before in Junie’s hometown. Imagine the horror on my face when I saw my sweetheart smiling with three missing teeth in a mugshot. The charges? Prostitution and possesion . Now the story goes that Junie’s parents kicked her out of the house once they saw the rabbithole she was falling down.Very soon, Junie found herself running with the wrong crowd and got mixed up into drugs. I hadn’t realized just how difficult things had been for her. To this day I always wonder how someone so beautiful and talented could just throw her life away. Sometimes I wonder if I had gone back home with her if things would be different today.
Unfortunately, I live in the reality that involved Junie’s tragic fate. I sent a farewell letter to her parents house. I don’t know if she ever got it, but I have since moved on. I still think about the old Junie and what we once had, but I can’t bring myself to find her because I am not prepared for heartbreak again.”
A Total Dreamboat
“In the late eighties when I was in high school, I dated a guy on the football team. He was one of the star players and was quite popular. I remember thinking he was a total ‘dream boat.’ All my friends were jealous of me and some of his friends even tried to convince me to date them instead, but we only had eyes for each other.
Our love story unfolded like a John Hughes movie. We shared secret kisses behind the bleachers, exchanged handwritten notes in class, and danced to “Sweet Child o’ Mine” at prom. Everything felt perfect until it didn’t.
As senior year rolled around, something shifted in my boyfriend’s behavior. He became distant and began hanging out with a different crowd, one I didn’t quite fit into. I tried to brush it off as senior-year jitters, but the late-night arguments and hurtful comments soon became unbearable.
One evening, he came over to my house, his expression a mix of guilt and sadness. He confessed that he needed space and that our relationship was holding him back. I was shattered. I couldn’t understand what had gone wrong.
Months passed, and the pain slowly turned into a dull ache. Then came the shocking revelation. One day a friend confided in me that she had been seen my ex kissing another guy at a party. There had also been rumors floating around about my ex that involved him and multiple other guys, rumors that on the surface were extremely hard to believe. My world came crashing down; I couldn’t believe it.
It was a warm spring day when I mustered the courage to confront him. He hesitated, his gaze falling to the ground. In that moment, it was crystal clear. He was gay, and all those months of cruelty had been his desperate attempt to hide his true self.
I could never be mad at him. In fact, my heart ached for him, torn between the person I had loved and the person he truly was. We said our goodbyes that day, both of us in tears. I wished him happiness and the freedom to be his authentic self. I told him that he could have told me the truth and perhaps saved me trouble of believing I had done something wrong. Thankfully, we rekindled our friendship at least. I’m happy to share that we still talk to each other on social media from time to time.
My ex remains a cherished memory of my high school days, a bittersweet reminder that love can be as complex and multifaceted as the world we live in.
As the years roll on, I realized that the late eighties were a time of growth, discovery, and, ultimately, acceptance. My high school love story may not have had the fairytale ending I once dreamed of, but it left me with a deeper understanding of love, compassion, and the importance of being true to oneself.”
A Never-Ending Mystery
“In high school I dated a girl named Carrie. She was very sweet and kind and absolutely loved playing volleyball. Our relationship was pretty typical for our age. We would go to dive bars and concerts together and just hang out with friends like any other normal teenagers. Her parents had way more money than mine did. I remember getting hard stares from her old man every time I came to visit, but Carrie’s mother loved me too.
On her seventeenth birthday she got a sweet new ride. She took Driver’s Education already but it was her dad who took his time getting her a car. Now that I’m the proud father of not one but two teenaged daughters, I completely understand the pain of watching his little girl growing up entirely too fast. But Carrie was responsible and devoted to making him proud. When her father finally got her the car she had been asking for, she was ecstatic. We both took it for a spin immediately. Carrie having a car made our after school activities so much easier too.
I honestly saw myself marrying Carrie. I was young and didn’t know much about love at the time, but what I did know was that Carrie was probably the only real ‘love’ I will ever have in my lifetime.
So what happened?
Well, I instantly knew something was up when Carrie was late to first period one morning for school. After the class was over, I called her dad who panicked at the news before telling me he would try driving around to see if he could find her. Unfortunately, there were no signs of Carrie’s car anywhere. There were also no reports of any accidents or anything in the morning or the night before. A missing person’s report was finally issued for her. The next several days went by agonizingly slow.
Then, on a chilly Saturday morning, I received the worst phone call of my life. They found Carrie’s car at the bottom of a lake. The strangest thing about it was that Carrie had no reason to drive down the road she did. Her father explained that the last time she was seen, she told him that she had to go run a quick errand. He worked nights and Carrie’s mother was out of town, so he didn’t find it unusual that Carrie’s car wasn’t in the driveway the following morning because he assumed she was at school. I was so grief stricken that I almost didn’t graduate, but my teachers were willing to work with me. There was no evidence of foul play, but Carrie’s death will never make sense to me.
I still miss her and would much rather have a silly first love story than a tragic one.
I just wish she was here.”