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Interesting Story About a Boyhood Friend  [message #75718] Sun, 28 April 2019 23:35 Go to next message
Ian Fatima is currently offline  Ian Fatima

Getting started

Registered: June 2017
Messages: 18

https://www.wired.com/story/my-search-for-boyhood-friend-led -to-dark-discovery/
Re: Interesting Story About a Boyhood Friend  [message #75722 is a reply to message #75718] Fri, 03 May 2019 05:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Teddy is currently offline  Teddy

Really getting into it
Location: USA
Registered: October 2006
Messages: 484


I've only ever tried to look up one friend. A friend I had a crush on when I was a teenager, and who, as it turns out also had a crush on me. When I grew up I moved far away from my childhood home and lost track of my friend who also vanished out of sight. I made several half hearted attempts to locate him and I could never find him, even after the advent of the internet. His name was uncommon enough that one would think he could be found with a bit of digging.

One time when I was back in my hometown visiting my parents I spoke with his mom who attended church with my parents. I went with them with the specific mission of speaking with her about him but it was obvious that she was deliberately refusing to tell me anything. 

A year or so later I asked my older brother who has lived his life in the old hometown if he knew anything and I told him about my conversation with my friend's mom. His only comment was to ask if I'd considered the fact that he might be incarcerated. I considered that, but if so, you'd think google would have told me that. 

Well, one day, about fifteen years after that unproductive chat with his mom, it suddenly dawned on me to do a Facebook search. Low, and behold, there he was, living on the old home place, the sheep ranch where he'd been raised. At that point my search was over and I suddenly realized that knowing his location, and that he was still living, was all the closure I needed. It was only by chance that I ran into his sister not too long ago in the vacation area where I live. We chatted a long time. She told me that he'd never married, that he was gay, and alcoholic, has been in and out of abusive relationships his entire adult life, and that he'd had a crush on me as a teenager.

I was gobsmacked, but again, I had all the information I ever wanted and probably more. I've never felt the urge to contact him. I know I can anytime I want to. Right now, I just don't desire to make that journey.

“There's no grays, only white that's got grubby. I'm surprised you don't know that. And sin, young man, is when you treat people as things. Including yourself. That's what sin is.” - Terry Pratchett
Re: Interesting Story About a Boyhood Friend  [message #75724 is a reply to message #75722] Sat, 04 May 2019 18:21 Go to previous messageGo to next message
luvtwinks is currently offline  luvtwinks

Likes it here

Registered: August 2018
Messages: 175

I too have looked up a childhood friend I had a crush on. The result was not as shocking as told in the article nor as productive as Teddy's experience. I basically stumbled across his mother's obituary which mentioned the town he lived in. I did a bunch of Google searches and found his LinkedIn profile and a couple of pics. Jackpot! He's married with no kids and works for the government. Although I now at least have his professional contact information I think I'll stop here. The last words he spoke to me when we were twelve were something to the effect of "I'm not allowed to hang out with you anymore. Go away and leave me alone"! I guess his religious mother did not approve of some inappropriate activities. Oh well. It was still nice to "find" him again and see some recent photos.

[Updated on: Sat, 04 May 2019 18:23]

Re: Interesting Story About a Boyhood Friend  [message #75736 is a reply to message #75724] Wed, 08 May 2019 02:43 Go to previous message

Likes it here
Location: Earth
Registered: April 2013
Messages: 276

I read the story when it was first published (I use Firefox as my internet brower these days, and it was an article it recommended on the main page when you first bring it up).  Definitely an interesting story.

I've sometimes wondered myself as to what happened to some of the people I knew in my youth that I've since lost contact with, though I've never gotten around to doing any sort of search for them.   I guess it's only becase I didn't know some of them well enough to be particularly interested in taking the time to do even an Internet search for them.
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