On being understood

I’ve had the same conversation with a couple of people – and maybe I brought it up each time, but maybe they all did independently (and that case is far more interesting). It’s something along the lines of: what if I wasn’t actually real, and you’re just going through life with a sort of, imaginary friend. I think it’s a conversation that only happens when you’ve become so close with someone, and you believe so strongly that they understand you, that you almost can’t believe that they’re real, because there has been so much misunderstanding in the past with so many people. This person who finally does understand you, they must be some creation of your mind – some inner part of you.

The thought (that you imagined them) it doesn’t go away when they do – it gets stronger. If someone who understood you so well, and who you in turn understood, decides to up and leave, then they must never have really been there to begin with. They must have been part of your fiction, and the bond you had must have been fabricated. Because a bond that strong couldn’t have broken with such a quick snap – unraveled and frayed as if there was no cosmic force holding it together.

But maybe that is exactly what happens. You push and pull and add more weight. Testing the tensile strength. Giving more and more of yourself to another person. Letting them in. Showing them you. It weighs on them. It strains the relationship – eventually, it does become too much. The fabric of the bond changes, and it does snap. And it is that very understanding – the understanding you jokingly swore you had to have made up to be true – that causes it to snap. No one person can take on someone else’s baggage completely.

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