This is an excerpt from “Friendships without Borders“, don’t know why I put it in there really.
We’re talking teenagers, over 20 years ago, which generally don’t know better, but from what I’ve seen, there are lots of adult teenagers and children out there these days.
This probably doesn’t belong in this article, but hey, it’s my personal blog. I consider it part of the reason I seek a more honest and enlightened world, I may edit this out later and throw it in another post.
This will be the third childhood friend I’ve mentioned in this article, the first was my unconditional black friend, the second was my “creative” friend who planned the skits for our home movies. We’ll call this third one the “troubled” friend.
During my personal childhood hell, I had a friend that turned out to be very troubled. Apparently his parents and teachers could not see the signs. Just as teachers could not see my suffering either, same school.
He was one of those overly social types that made friends with everyone easily, including bullies. Very popular in school for reasons I never understood, and of course he was chasing down different girls all the time. He was a class clown.
He was mostly a good friend, we played video games, and he was in the home movies/skits I made with my “creative” friend. We even took him on vacation. He always seemed eager to please the “cool” kids who tended to be bullies or jocks. After several years of friendship, my family was once again moving to another state. We trusted him and his parents so much, that we entrusted them with watching our house while we were out of state looking for a place to live.
When my troubled friend learned this, he saw an opportunity to impress some of his older friends, who happened to be a couple of gang members that didn’t go to our school. They exploited his desire to please them, and decided to rob our house while we were gone. They weren’t too bright, they stole some of my collectibles, like rare trading cards and sold them and local comic shops. They also stole a briefcase with some papers inside that they thought were worthless and tossed into a creek, ruining them. Turns out they were the most valuable thing they stole, irreplaceable.
They were caught because a family member of my troubled friend found my belongings hidden in his room. The decision fell on me whether or not to press charges. Doing so meant I would have caused a lot of trouble for my troubled friend’s parents, who were good-natured people with good values. If I could have pressed charges against the older culprits only, I would have.
After the robbery, my troubled friend began coaching school bullies on how to really get to me on a personal level, which lead to one of the few times I actually started the fight.
On the day I was moving, My last dog suddenly became mysteriously ill. He was pretty healthy and still had plenty of years in him. By the time he reached the vet, he was all but gone. Still have his ashes, waiting to take him to a place that feels like “home”. Should have done an autopsy, because we suspected poison. After all, the bullies knew where I lived. That wouldn’t be the first time someone decided to murder one of my pets either, sadly. Another time.
I’ve learned to forgive, and have forgiven him. Looking back, I know he was troubled and needed help he wasn’t getting. I think he had too many friends, and was trying to keep them all happy. Popularity was his main concern. So he did something to impress his popular “bad ass gangsta” friends by sacrificing one awkward friend, me. Hope he got the right kind of help and didn’t lose his way.
So consider this a reminder my trust issues are not about “you”. They’re about all the different experiences I had that lead to PTSD. That includes daggers sticking out of my back from both foolish young peers and adults that should have been known better.