So, if you've read my more recent posts, you'll know that I had a not-so grand online relationship (to say the very least). They weren't all bad, though.
For example, my friend DS who recently died. I met him online, and we were pretty good friends for awhile there. We hung out, watched movies, drove around. I miss him, but we weren't ever super close. Don't take that to mean I don't care. I do. I'm just stating a fact. We were definitely friends, and he was good for talking to and advice, as well as a good time, but we weren't the kind of friends who hugged or who cried together, we never had terribly deep conversations, none of the things that make someone a close friend.
But there was another online friend who was a close friend. For the sake of this post, I'll call him Q.
In my freshman/sophomore year of college, as we've discovered, I lived online. Chat rooms, forums, dating sites, LiveJournal... You name it and I probably had an account. One site in particular that I loved was OKCupid. I wound up meeting a few local guys through their site, but the meetings never went beyond a first date or an initial meet up.
Then one day (a few months before I turned 20) I got a message from some guy in Minnesota (Q). My screen name was faygokid, and he asked if I liked Faygo. Well, trying to be the cool kid that I never was, I said yes and started asking if he was a Juggalo (I know, I know...). He most definitely wasn't, he just liked the pop (for those who don't know, it's effing cheap and tasty), but somehow we kept messaging.
Through a lot of guessing and mind games, I finally got to know him. Q was a college student and was about a year or two younger than I was. He was an absolute music snob, wore skinny jeans before it was cool, and knew off the bat that he'd never date someone like me. I think that's what made our friendship work so well. We both knew it would never be more than that.
After a few weeks of talking nonstop online, we moved to the phone and talked for hours at a time. Q and I both had some emotional damage and mental illness issues, and that was another reason we clung to each other. He was the first person I had openly spoken to about cutting and burning who I thought actually understood. We talked through our demons together on more than one occasion, and this fast, intense friendship just kind of happened.
A few months later things were less intense, but we still spoke on a regular basis. A few months after that is when I ended my first attempt at college and went back home to get a job. He would call me randomly at night. We'd talk for hours and then I wouldn't hear from him again for weeks. That was just how we were.
I went to visit him the summer I turned 21. I had gotten a hand-me-down car for my birthday, and my first big trip was up to Minneapolis. I ended up getting lost because the address he'd given me had left out that it was S whatever street and I wound up at N whatever street. I had to call him and have him figure out where in the world I was and how to get to him. I was nervous as he helped me park where I needed to and walked me up to his apartment. But somehow, once I got into his room, everything felt fine. It's not like Q was the kind of person to put you at ease; quite the opposite. He was always judging and criticizing. But something felt right about being there.
That first trip, I spent 90% of the weekend in his room. The only times we left were to get food, for me to grab a smoke (which he hated), or for a quick trip to the video game store. Otherwise, we stayed curled up together, listening to music or watching shows on his laptop. It wasn't really a sexual thing, just a comfort thing. We just needed to be close to one another.
I made a second trip up to see him about 6 months later. He was actually nice enough to take me out to dinner one of the nights I was there and put up with me taking an obnoxious number of pictures. We still spent a lot of the weekend laying around together, but it wasn't quite as intense as that first meeting.
That was about 6 years ago, and I haven't seen him since. Every few months or so I would get a late-night phone call from him, and we'd talk like we used to, but things were different. His on/off girlfriend didn't want him to talk to me, so he could only call when she wasn't around. At a certain point, the calls stopped altogether.
I think about him frequently. Not obsessively, but I do wonder about him, and I miss talking to him for hours. A few weeks ago, I did some of my best Facebook stalking and found him, but he didn't return my message. I'm guessing it has to do with his wife (he appears to be married to her now), but maybe he just has no interest in talking to me again.
I wish I knew. I wish I had some kind of closure so I could acknowledge that our friendship has passed. It would suck, sure, but at least I could look back and think about the insane and intense friendship we had instead of wondering if we'll ever speak again or if he remembers me as fondly as I remember him.
Closure. I kind of hate that word. Maybe that's because it's so hard to come across and because I want it so badly. Maybe it's because I'm scared of what it would bring. Either way, I don't think I'll be getting it anytime soon.