All my life for as long as I can remember I've had friends, boyfriends, lovers, relatives that only I know about.
Because well, they're all in my imagination. Ok I said it! I have imaginary friends. I know it's weird for a 29yr old to have imaginary friends but what can I say...? Its involuntary but I find myself creating these "people" and weaving out their minds and fates. At every point when I was younger I always thought I would outgrow them but I never did.
I remember Olaolu. He was my boyfriend when I was in QC. He was in Atlantic Hall and when he got to SS3 he was made Head Boy. He lived in VI and his parents loved me. Whenever they took vacations I was sure to get loads of goodies, he also bought me my first mobile phone, this was in the 090... era, before GSM. Olaolu was so real to me, he was both friend and advisor. I talked to him about everything and always felt better after I did. I never thought I would outgrow him but after secondary school he sort of fizzled out. So yes, just like Olaolu they all have lives, careers, jobs, relationships, pasts, futures, regrets ... Everything.
At this point I don't know if I'll ever fully outgrow them. They keep me sane. My current boo is called Bolade and he's the most amazing individual in the world, unfortunately his mum isn't particularly fond of me. (For some reason most of my imaginary boos are Yorubas. Things never work out with the Igbo ones. I dunno why). My bestie is Taylor, she works with Citi Bank and is the most loyal friend a girl can ask for. I can't talk in details about my current imaginary friends because they're still so real to me and it's all too personal. Last two years I found out on one of my fav non-gossip blogs (bisodunwrites.blogspot.com, she doesn't blog anymore though) that she also has imaginary friends, just the same way I do. And guess what, a number of her readers admitted to having them too. All in varying degrees. But a few people just thought we were either mad or possessed. One called it Ogbanje
The above is an excerpt from Bisodun's post. Through the years I was ashamed and thought there was something wrong with me but not anymore. My imaginary friends have done so much for me. In times of loneliness, confusion, frustration, they've advised, talked, consoled, hugged and loved me. I run most of my decisions through them and usually get good feedback. But then, not all are good as I've quarreled with a few over time.
No, I'm not schizophrenic or depressed and they're not alter egos. I didn't experience any trauma as a child and I've always had friends and people to talk to, so unlike some people they weren't born out of social anxiety, loneliness or depression. I've tried but I can't help but create these people and on a few occasions someone has walked in on me talking to one of them. They'll ask "why are you talking to yourself" and I always say I was just thinking out loud.
I hope I don't get judged for this, it's not something I have any control over. It's also not something I'm ashamed of, although it isn't exactly something to be proud of either. On the upside having imaginary friends has made me creative and some of my stories are based on experiences I've had with one or some of them in the past.
I think I'm slowly outgrowing them. I don't have as many as I used to and even the few I have I hardly talk to or spend any time with. Sometimes these days I forget they're there; except my Bolade. LOL.
So there you have it! Is there something that no one knows about you that you're not very proud of?