Tuesday, March 20, 2007

On What Grounds Would You End an Imaginary Friendship

Little break from cleaning here to share this story with the world.

My seven year old gained an imaginary friend when he was 4. I don't blame him. His mom went in hospital for an extended time, his family split up for 3 months before everyone moved to a different country, his baby brother was born 2 months premature, and then just after he gets settled into his new home in a whole different country, his Pappap died. So, several enormous life events in a row and here came a slew of imaginary friends. One was around for awhile, then he was twins, then it was twins and their buddy.

We didn't make a big deal of this. It was obviously a coping mechanism and an outlet for a VERY active imagination. Our son would tell us tales of how he and his imaginary friends went out joy riding in a moving truck, working on farm equipment, driving a train. Harmless fun really.

Stories about the imaginary friend(s) started tapering off a year or so ago. They'd come once a month, then every several months, and until the other day I hadn't heard about "Kyle" or his twin in about six months. Well, my little guy informed me that he has given up his imaginary friend.

"Oh?" I said, "And how did you come to that decision?" Fully expecting he'd tell me he's growing up and doesn't need any imaginary friends.

"He was mean, so I don't want him to be my friend anymore." Dear son tells me. I ask him to explain.

"Well, I was falling to sleep and Kyle asked me if I was thinking about Kiara" Kiara's a pretty girl from school "and I told him 'no.' So he said, 'I'm gonna te-ell, I'm gonna te-ell, I'm gonna te-ell Kiara that you weren't thinking about her!' So I decided that I'm not his friend anymore because that was mean!"

Now you know what exactly is grounds for ending an imaginary friendship.


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