The first time we broke up, we were still in college. It was one of those second semester romances, the kind that start because Chicago winters are bitterly cold by the lake and end because the thawing lilac buds of a Chicago spring subtly encourage one that June will hold something better. We were lying in his bunk bed and watching the ceilings change with the rising sun, and I told him that I’d be changing schools. He told me that he wanted to remain friends but that he had been sleeping with literally dozens of other girls. He also told me some of his deepest and darkest secrets, about why he was the way that he was. We made vague plans to make breakfast together, but after I was sure he had fallen into a deep sleep, I climbed down from his bunk, got dressed, and tiptoed out the room. I didn’t see or speak to him again for five months.

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