Chapter 7: Dum-Dum

After some time, I started to party frequently with my cousin, Tina. She was always the life of every party, and she was always down to have a good time. Tina also had a thing for a man in a uniform. Most of the guys she dated were some branch of military, so going out with her consisted of meeting up with some type of soldier she scouted on Military Cupid. Something about being a military wife never appealed to me, but I went a long anyway.

I met Dominic at an Army base on one of Tina’s great excursions to find her husband. There was three of them that lived in a surprisingly well kept, three-bedroom apartment just outside of Fort Carson. Dominic was the youngest of the three. At age 20, he was one year younger than me, the youngest person  I have dated, and would continue to be for the rest of my life.

They called him Dum-Dum. That should have been my first clue to his maturity. But again, I chose to ignore his bad qualities to seek for some good. Dum-Dum was shorter than the other guys I’ve dated. He had messy brown hair, deep blue eyes, and a scruffy little face that read, “fuck hygiene”. He had a slight disheveled look about him, like he just left home for the first time, and didn’t have the slightest clue how fold laundry. He had an almost clueless look permanently glued to his face, and that’s what I loved about him. I loved that he can have such a boyish innocence to him, but then put on a uniform in the morning, shave his face, comb his hair, and be a completely different person.

I continued to go out with Tina on her visits to her boyfriend. That gave me a reason to keep going up to see Dum-Dum. He was the perfect amount of affectionate without being too overbearing, and his embraces always felt so comfortable. I would continue to see him every single weekend for the next several months before things took a turn.

One day while browsing on his facebook page, I noticed a comment on one of his photos, before that photo quickly disappeared. After a quick search through his friend’s list, I found the photo of a girl that was familiar. After logging onto her page, I was in shock. She lived in Minnesota, and was happily in a relationship with Dum-Dum, as it stated. She was just 16 years old, a child. Most of her posts were about him, wishing for his safe return to her. The most recent post being about the current day. In that moment, I felt sad for this girl, ashamed for my actions with him, and deeply embarrassed that this could happen to me. Without thinking, I decided to write her a message.

In this message, I explained to her that I have been dating him for several months now, and I had no idea she existed. I apologized for being “the other woman”, and for not seeing it sooner. At the end, she asked for my number, and we had a conversation. She called me that night, and the first thing she said to me was, “You’re very pretty”. At that moment, I felt sad for the girl, no longer upset with myself, but angry at him. She asked me what she should do, and we agreed that he was not the one for either of us. I continued to keep in touch with this girl for several weeks after the incident. I almost felt responsible for her well being, she now being the youngest friend I’ve made. She eventually found someone else, and our connection slowly drifted away. I’m glad she decided to move on.

My confrontation with Dum-Dum went as expected. He denied the relationship, stating he had broken up with her months prior to meeting me. I didn’t tell him I had spoken to her, and decided it didn’t matter either way. I was done with him, and didn’t feel the need to argue any longer. I guess you can say Dum-Dum was my first heart break, and the first time someone had treated me wrong. It really took a big stab at my ego, and in a way, I don’t think I ever fully recovered from that. No girl ever forgets her first heart break.

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