I ask myself: Do I have any friends? Aside from family members and excluding blog followers or followees, do I have any real friends?
The answer is no.
A real friend to me is someone whose presence I value to the point of feeling sad and torn at the thought of their death. There is no one in my life at the moment who fits this category. Therefore I must conclude that I have no friends.
I feel ashamed.
How did it come to this?
I know: marriage.
I spent the last 17 years of my life trying to maintain the friendship I had with my wife, and in the end it failed. Or maybe it didn’t. We still talk to each other. But our relationship doesn’t meet my above definition of “a real friend.” I don’t feel sad or torn at the thought of her death.
Maybe there’s something wrong with my definition. Is it too extreme? Is it normal to have become so unattached to people? Maybe it comes with age. I don’t know, I’ve never been this old before. I am older than I have ever been and my life came with no instructions manual. So I’m not sure of anything.
I wonder if there is a point in life where it becomes impossible to make real new friends. It seemed easier when I was young. But as I get older, it’s even difficult to imagine. I have so much baggage. The people my age have so much baggage too. How could I start a fresh new friendship while carrying so much baggage?
The fact that I’m an introvert does not make the prospect look any brighter either. Having online friends is probably the best I can hope for. Who could tolerate my presence face to face? It would take quite a special person. I wonder if anyone would really enjoy being close to me.
I’m like the guy in the photo above. My face is a computer monitor that has been switched off. It reveals nothing of what is inside. No data is visible. It’s just a blank screen. And I’m so sensitive, it’s like my body is covered with buttons. Who knows what would happen inside my central processing unit if someone would push one of my buttons.
If I had a plug I would pull it out of the socket.