It was bit of a surprise, that summer, when I felt no hard feelings when every single friend had failed to reach out to me. As someone who had had a complete emotional breakdown at only six years old because someone no long considered themselves to be my friend, this level of indifference was foreign to me. Chilling. Almost as if I were now standing at the eye of an emotional hurricane. The following year, I repeated my experiment; I called no one in an effort to get together, and in return no one called me. Indifference. At twelve years old I had the revelation that no friend truly cared about me. Sure, we enjoyed each others’ presence, but our relationships ended there. It came to my attention that I had never made it beyond the label of acquaintance with those who I considered close to me. I entered high school with an air of pessimism. I resolved to avoid making “friends” altogether. My plan failed miserably, and despite the relationships I created over the next year, I continued to distance myself. I no longer grew close to others, and I tried hard to make sure no one became attached to me. Stock friendships and vague acquaintances relieved me of a seemingly endless boredom, but still I avoided true friendship. Staying in touch with others was completely inexistent to me; I simply didn’t care. Each relationship was formed on the basis of my existential boredom. I only cared about entertaining myself; others were simply pawns in my game.
I continue to lack affection towards others as I enter my senior year in high school. Looking back, though, I had a lot of fun with my acquaintances of the past. Even if each friend was no more than a phase, even if each relationship was built on artificial feelings, I still wonder about why I closed myself off for so long if I no longer cared whether or not people left me. Laying awake at night, though, the truth, my fears, run through my head. I avoided caring not because I didn’t value friendship, but because I feared that I was to them as they were to me.