Things became more complicated when Jen found the box where I kept Keri’s pics and letters. I had not told Jen about Keri. She erupted. She shoved me, pounded on my chest. She said I was a cheater and didn’t care about her. Now, I know, technically it is cheating. To be fair though I was already with Keri before I met Jen; I was cheating on her not Jen. After a long talk I professed my love for Jen, told her she is the one I am with and even having sex with, and that I had not even seen Keri for almost a year at that point. Jen promptly took all the pictures and letters, tossed them in a coffee can and burned them. I look back now and think I should have seen the signs of her mania, but I didn’t. I just saw her passionate love for me. Unrelated to that incident, it was time for her to go back home, her parents were expecting her back. So we said out goodbyes until Christmas break.
During the next month, Keri was noticing I wasn’t writing her. She made a call, not to me but to my best friend (in case you forgot, he was with us in Whitewater and knew Keri as well and was her friend). He brought me into the room and told me about the call. Keri was crying and hurt and didn’t know what she did wrong, “What did I do to make him hate me?” she asked him. I broke down and started crying. I was wrong, Keri loved me just as much. The denial that she cared for me that much, that I had convinced myself to believe, came crashing down on me. Everything I felt for her came rushing back and also the fact I still loved Jen. I was fucked up. If I had to point to a time, where even if I didn’t know it yet, that my polyamorous leaning makeup was apparent, it was then. I loved both of these girls.
To my seventeen-year-old mind which had barely begun to even grasp the concept of girls and relationships, the idea of loving two girls was insane. It had to be infatuation, or guilt, something. I was raised to believe in monogamous traditional relationships, ones in which boy meets girl, falls in love, and starts a family. I had to make a choice. It was heart wrenching because I knew I was going to hurt one of them no matter what I did, and I would have to live with that consequence the rest of my life. After some more tears I made a decision. I chose Jen. I had shared more with her than I was ever able to with Keri. I penned a letter and mailed it the next morning. I never received a letter back. Many years later my best friend told me he had been in contact with her again and that she was doing well. She achieved her dream of being a physical therapist and was married with children. He also told me she revealed to him that it took her a couple years to get over me and that she went through a streak of over drinking, partying, and meaningless sex her freshman and sophomore years at college after my final letter. Isn’t he just a fucking awesome friend?