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Saturday, September 08, 2007

Vanishing Friends

My life is almost completely lived on the internet. I'm not sure if I should be proud or ashamed. As such most of the people that I would consider some of my "best" friends, I know solely online. They are a screen name and if I'm lucky a photo. Some I've been "talking" with for 5+ years. They know things about that no else does. We've celebrated, we've cried, we've always been there.

Having internet friends is an amazing facet of this digitized world. People I would have never met before are suddenly available 100% of the time. If I have a problem - I write it, post it, and suddenly I've got advise from people with different backgrounds, different perspectives, different attitudes. On the net, oil and water can mix.

Internet friendships have a very serious downfall though. People disappear with no way to track them down. You wonder, you worry, there's nothing you can do. There's no door to knock on, no phone to call. You're left wondering if something in the friendship went wrong. What did you say? What did you not say? Are they ok? Did something horrible happen? You may never know.

There's also times when you want to be able to reach out and hug a friend whose life has taken a horrible turn. To be there, to support them, to touch them. Words on a screen can never replace the power of a hug. Words are not enough at those times, yet that is what you are left with. "I'm sorry" looks empty, blank, vacant on the screen.

5 comments:

Chrissie in Belgium said...

Boy do I agree with you! I SO agree with everything you said. I have no better friends than those other Ds I have met on the internet. I worry about people who disappear and I HATE not being able to feel their touch, not being able to HUG them in reality, to comfort them sometimes and other times to share happiness.

Jenny said...

Hi, my name is Jenny and I'm a teenager with type 1 diabetes from California. This fall my dad and I are riding 70 miles through Death Valley to raise money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (this is our 2nd ride, we rode 58 through Death Valley in May 2006 and raised $11,500 ). I'm looking for people to help sponsor me...even if it's $1! There are also other ways to help if you cannot donate money...all listed on my website under "ways you can help". Please visit my website to learn more:

http://www.geocities.com/RunninOnInsulin

If you would like to donate online, please go to this website: http://ride.jdrf.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=rideCentral.personalpag
e&riderID=7122

I also made a youtube video about my fundraiser, so if you're interested in watching, here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GukbiGje6lA (it's a comedy)

Thanks so much for your time and for any help! Please email me with any questions (my email is on my website).
Please help me reach my goal of raising $15,000!! Thanks!
-Jenny

Nikki said...

I know exactly what you mean, I come to the OC to feel better about having T1 diabetes because you guys are the only ones who get it. Sometimes, this is all we have.

Major Bedhead said...

I know more people inside the computer than out. It is weird sometimes and it can be kind of cold when you just really want someone to talk to, in person.

I don't know that I have any solutions, but I know where you're coming from, if that's any help.

Sher said...

I am still wondering if Laura(ICUNURSE) is ok :(