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This could have been a story about us. About how I felt lonely one night, and went on that app that people use for 'a good time.' How I found you. This could have been a story about how we eventually decided to meet after a few days of talking. About how I bragged to my friends that first night after we had sex even though we had sworn we wouldn’t.

This could have been a story about love. About how, even though I'd told my friends I'd never enter a relationship with a girl I met on Tinder, I had fallen for you. Talking with you slowly became a part of my daily routine: staying over in each other’s dorms, eating dark-chocolate-covered blueberries, and listening to “Lay Me Down”’ by Sam Smith. I remember all the plans we made: meeting each other’s family and considering becoming official. 

Then I finally got to meet your sister. We dropped her off at a pregame before going back to my room.We shared that bottle of pink moscato before we had anything to eat. We had what seemed like the best sex I’d ever had and, for a moment, I thought I loved you.

But I wasn’t expecting what came next: the tears streaming down your face as your head rested on my chest, while you confessed  that you weren’t yet over your ex, your first heartbreak. And I definitely wasn’t expecting you to break up with me as you sported my Princeton long sleeve on that following Monday. What can I say? You broke me. The man I thought I had become was now an inconsolable mess who didn’t want to interact with friends, who stayed in bed for four whole days, and who cried at any thought of you. It was funny how people would tell me you weren’t worth it, remind me that “I’m an amazing guy,” but those felt like empty words any friend would say to console someone who wasn’t good enough.

So, instead, this is a story about my own first heartbreak and the regrettable choices that came with it. See, I thought I had found someone shortly after you. We went on cute dates and took a road trip. I met her parents, and she told me the three words you never said. She even liked dark-chocolate-covered blueberries like you do and, for a moment, I thought I loved her too. But I realized that I don’t. And I’m too scared to let her down because I’m scared of breaking her the way you broke me. I know I’ll have to do it eventually, but I don't yet have the courage to perpetuate the cycle that you started.

So,  whoever you are with now, I just hope that you’ve learned as much from this as I have. I’m not happy about the decisions that I made after you left, and I know I’m the only one to blame for them. But if there’s one thing I can thank you for — and it’s really the only thing — it’s that you taught me to feel something I had never felt before. And I hope I get to feel that way in the future with someone who cherishes me the way I once thought you did.

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