Part 4 of "crazy dudes I have dated" and at the same time Part 2 of "seemingly insignificant events which changed my life forever"
My first ever boyfriend...well, I met him at a very strange time in my life, as Tyler Durden would say. In fact, the night I met him, I met someone else- his best friend at the time, M. M is one of my best friends to this day, 11 years later. The night I met M (and my first boyfriend) was the night before my 15th birthday. I was at a friends house for the weekend, as jews are wont to do- since we can't travel on the sabbath, we like to spend the sabbath in other towns, sleeping over at people's houses.
I was sleeping over at the house of a new friend I had made in high school. My first boyfriend and M were both friends of hers from her synagogue, and on friday night we all walked around after dinner and talked. This (in my experience) is what modern orthodox kids do all the time on the sabbath- go on super long walks in big groups, and talk to their friends. It's actually pretty nice.
Well first came this seemingly insignificant event. I was walking around talking to this guy M, who I had just met. One seemingly innocuous comment that M made had a HUGE impact on my life. M offhandedly mentioned that he writes poetry (I don't think he does anymore, but he did back then), and that he "keeps shabbas, unless he has a really good idea for a poem, and then he will write it down." (writing is against the rules of sabbath for jewish people).
This information made a huge impression on me, which should be fairly obvious given that I remember the exact conversation 11 years later. See, I had met non jewish people before, and I had met non-orthodox jewish people before, but since they were 'different' than me, it didn't bother me that I had to do stuff that they didn't. But I had never before met someone who had been raised orthodox, but did not keep all the rules. It didn't even cross my mind as a possibility before that point. But suddenly here was a dude who had broken one of the laws that he had been raised to keep, and nothing bad had happened to him! He hadn't been struck by lightning or anything!
That was a huge paradigm shift for me. It was like waking up after living in a dream for 15 years. I actually have very few memories of my childhood before that night, but after that I can recall specific conversations and events in perfect detail.
So back to my first ever boyfriend...I met him the same night as M, and after a short conversation in which M totally changed my life forever, I ended up hanging out with that other dude most of the weekend. We went on a shabbas walk and everything. And saturday night, a whole big group of us went to see a movie at someone's house, and my first ever boyfriend gave me my first ever kiss on my 15th birthday.
The next day I called him and naively asked if since we kissed that meant we were boyfriend and girlfriend now. And he was like "I guess". But I couldn't tell my parents. My parents (as many jews do I believe) don't think teenagers should be doing normal teenager things like going on dates and making out or whatever. That's for the non-jews. Jewish teenagers shouldn't date at all in fact, until they are ready to get married, and should only date for the purpose of finding their future husband, and not to have fun or anything like that. So my first ever boyfriend became my secret boyfriend.
He would come to visit his friends in my town for the sabbath, and I would visit my friends in his town, and we would hang out on those friday afternoons and the long shabbas afternoons of the summer. That summer I was volunteering at a hospital, and would take the bus to get to the hospital several towns away. I quickly figured out if I took the bus in the opposite direction and transfered busses in the super shadey city next to my town, I could get to my boyfriend's town, and end up just a block away from his house! His father had died several years earlier, and his mom worked full time, so as long as I left by a reasonable hour, I could tell my parents I was working at the hospital all day, and make out with him in his house instead.
I never had sex with him. If I hadn't gotten busted 2 months after I started dating him, I probably would have eventually. But as I said, he was my first kiss, and we were taking things relatively slow.
One time though, his mom came home mid-day to have lunch, while I was there. I spent half an hour hiding in his closet while he tried to act normal, and came back to his room several times to check on me. Excitement!
Stay tuned for part 2, in which I get busted by my parents, continued 'dating' him secretly even though we could never see each other, and eventually broke up with him. And then later found out some interesting (and fairly unpleasant/shocking) things about this dude.