The First Girlfriend

As I sat in the airport this morning, I saw on Facebook that my son had changed his relationship status. He has a new girlfriend and I guess he is ready to tell the world, his world at least. Too soon I thought. So soon. I was surprised at how sad it made me for the girlfriend he is now moving on from. His first girlfriend. The best friend he ever had, at some point. My heart hurts for her, for them, for all of us.

I told him I would not be sad about the break up. I lied. A little bit. His first girlfriend was a wonderful girlfriend. She was pretty free of drama, which when talking about teenage girls is a rarity. She never seemed to demand too much of his time and attention. And when they were together they seemed to always be happy in each other’s company.

As a mother what more could I ask for?

So it pains me to think about what it must be like to be the first girlfriend and read the status change. Maybe have a friend tell you they saw it. God that must be awful. Not that it would be the first she knew of it. He was very clear with her that he had met someone he wanted to know better. Their relationship had already changed, as it should with her being away at college. I was proud of him for being honest and straightforward even though it was not easy. But it can’t be easy to read those words–“in a relationship”–on a screen, either.

Maybe I am wrong, over-reacting. Maybe she too has moved on quickly and cares not a whit about a Facebook status.

But I hope she knows how thankful I am for her, for all the laughs, the momentous occasions, holidays, proms, and big gay weddings she shared with us over the last year-plus. I am grateful to her, and for the time they had together.

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