Thursday, January 20, 2011

mysteries of life: imaginary friends

I didn't have any imaginary friends when I was a child. I kind of think that the idea of having one is a little weird. I mean, I pretend that I'm friends with Betty White and Tina Fey, but that's totally different and not weird at all because those are real people.
I may not have had any imaginary friends, but my brother had a couple. One was named "Michael" and I think he was my brother's age, which was cool. But he also had this other one named "Uncle Bob" who was apparently 40 and slept under my brother's bed, which I think is totally crossing the line, as far as imaginary friends go. I'm kind of surprised that my parents didn't see the creepiness of that situation.

I can wrap my head around the fact that children often have imaginary friends, even though I did not. I can accept this as a "normal" thing. I'm all for the use of the imagination and the creation of characters, believe me. But I'm just not sure if I'd be able to encourage it happening with my own hypothetical children. Where does an imaginary friend start, and schizophrenia end? How do I know that this imaginary person isn't just some kind of spirit hoping to possess my child? How old is "too old" to have an imaginary friend?

God damn it, now I've made myself ponder all of life's tough questions.

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