Archives For online friendships

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“Dear Samara,

Would you mind masturbating and mailing me your panties?”

Sincerely,
Franklin Horshucer, Serial Killer

I could hear his heavy breathing. He sounded like Darth Vader with a sinus infection.

 

—-

I had another blog before this one. I didn’t write anything on it. Me and writing – we don’t mix.

When I write, bad things happen. I get addicted to heroin. Stuff like that.

 

I did leave lots of comments, and started receiving emails from bloggers. How the hell did they get my email address?

Most of the emails were creepy. I ignored them.

Wait. What’s this?

“Dear Samara,

May I email you privately? Only if you don’t mind. If you do, I promise never to bother you again. But I am a Nice Guy and I do not breathe like Darth Vader.”

Signed,

Nice Guy

 

I liked him. He was a good writer, and so sweet. The one time I actually wrote something, he told me I was “brilliant.”

His email I answered.

 

We emailed back and forth constantly, all day.

I had a new friend. Someone who considered me a REAL WRITER, a moniker I hadn’t felt entitled to in two decades.

My entire life changed.

I was energized.

The Ex’s ongoing battle for alimony, my bankruptcy, my best friend with cancer, my son’s draining special needs…

I felt like I could conquer anything. After 20 years, I was a writer again!

And then –

Abruptly, radio silence. After a month of 50-plus emails a day.

I panicked. What had I done wrong?

 

 

I realized how lonely I was.

I never thought of myself that way. Constantly surrounded by people, I craved more alone time than I got.

What I didn’t know was how much I needed to connect deeply with another human being; to feel special and important. All this attention lavished on me brought something dead inside me back to life.

And this fierce longing for connection, awoken and now unfulfilled –  was brutal.

 

—-

In 3 days I was headed to Boston to take care of my best friend, my old college roommate, after her mastectomy. Just before I left, my cousin called me with tragic news.

My favorite uncle was dead. And I would have to miss his funeral, to take care of my friend.

My uncle. The only connection I ever had to my father.

I was unabashedly his favorite niece. He never tired of bragging about me.

For 40 years, my uncle fed me anecdotes of his beloved older brother – the father I never really knew.

Now, there would be no more stories of him, ever. All that remained of him was buried under 6 feet of cold earth.

At a funeral I wasn’t even able to attend.

 

—-

 

From Boston, I emailed Nice Guy. I was desperate to have my writing friend back.

A day went by. Two. Three days later, he sent me a brief, dismissive email

I never heard from him again.

—-

 

Home.

Exhausted. Confused. Grief stricken.

I was fragmenting. My past and present were colliding.

I checked in on Nice Guy’s blog. He’d found new favorites to fawn over.

I racked my brains to understand why I’d been discarded, until I realized –

He had found out

the truth.

I was no writer. I couldn’t even sustain his interest for more than a month. .

It was 1994 all over again.

I relived the horrendous mess I’d made of my life. I stopped sleeping. Judged myself ruthlessly.

I spent my days drifting through “The Land Of Horrible Ways I’d Fucked Up My Life.”

Welcome back. So good to see you again.

Would you like some drugs?

—-

 

My best friend got the pathology report back from her surgery.

“What do you mean, Stage 3 aggressive? You said Stage 1!”

She answered me patiently, as though I were the sick one. “Yes. But there was another lump in the lump they removed.”

“What does that even MEAN?”

It just meant she was much, much sicker than we thought.

—-

 

I came home one afternoon to find Little Dude crying bitterly. The Ex had kicked him.

My son’s favorite hobby is torturing us. But-

DO. NOT. HIT. MY. CHILD. 

 

During a session with Little Dude’s absurdly overpriced ADHD therapist, I suggested to my husband that he learn to cope with our son without putting a foot up his ass.

Dr. Interloper said, “You kicked your son?”

“Yes.”

“I’m going to have to report you to Child Protection Services.”

The Ex handled it well. Shouted that I was a cunt, flung the car keys at me and stormed out of the room.

I waited for the inevitable fallout, walking around with a bruise on my cheek from where the keys had landed.

Just like old times.

—-

 

The next night two social workers appeared in my driveway. We passed inspection with flying colors.

A few days later, the call came.

I was under investigation.

 

They’d asked if there had ever been any domestic abuse in our home.

I lied and said there hadn’t been. I didn’t think it through. I couldn’t think straight about much at all. Sleep deprived and depressed, I was too busy floating around in my failed past.

CPS found police records of emergency room visits and a restraining order.

What else had I lied about?

They informed me that, for the time being, he could stay in my custody.

 

I stopped breathing when they said those words.

 

This isn’t happening.

Please tell me this isn’t happening.

 

They arranged to interview his teacher.

The guidance counselor.

His pediatrician.

His dentist.

His motherfucking dentist.

I wondered how far back they would investigate. Dear God, the things they could find if they poked around enough.

 

 

I called the case worker. I groveled. Where my kid is concerned, I’m not above groveling.

I dialed her office. “I was the Class Mom 2 years in a row.”

Called again. “Did I tell you I run the PTO Trunk or Treat every year?”

I stayed up all night, searching through boxes of photos. Tears streamed down my face as I looked for evidence that I was a worthy mom.

I found pictures of the party we threw when my son started kindergarten. We had invited 22 kids we never met, and their parents, to our home for a “Welcome to Kindergarten Party.”

Little Dude and I had painted a banner that read:

WELCOME CLASS OF 2022!

welcome 2022

At 2 am I texted the case worker the picture.

It was an office number and it didn’t go through.

I texted it over and over again, all night, anyway.

—-

 

I had constant pain in my chest. I was sure it was my heart breaking.

It turned out to be bronchitis.

 

The investigation continued.

I was reliving the past, only the nightmarish version where you lose your child, instead of your self-respect.

One night I had such stabbing pains in my chest, they shot all the way through to my back. I couldn’t breathe.

I thought, “This is what Kurt Cobain must have felt like right before he shot himself. Utter heartbreak.”

And then I fainted outside the supermarket, and the shopping cart kid called an ambulance.

 

The stabbing pain was pneumonia.

I spent 4 days in the hospital.

I missed my son’s 10th birthday.

 

Despite that, my kid still thinks I’m pretty great. He’s upstairs, sleeping.

I’m going to go up and kiss his sleepy little head when I finish this.

CPS decided I was an okay mom, after all.

 

—-

A fleeting cyberspace connection. Meaningless.
But what if you’re brand new to the online world?
And you naively assume every virtual friendship is as valuable as its real life analogue?

On each end of the wires is a living, breathing human being with a past and a present. And an ill-timed “meaningless” encounter might shake something frighteningly loose. Something that rolls around inside of you like a stray bullet, and damages a vital organ.

Your heart, maybe.

And you bleed out.

 

 

The Internet is a Rogue’s Paradise. People act without consequence, because they can.

I shut down that blog. I wanted no part of it.

 

Obviously, this wasn’t the end of my story.

To Be Continued…

 

Have you ever had an online experience like that? Do people treat online friends differently?
Talk to me. I’m listening. 

 

Join me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter .

o-CELL-PHONE-UPSET-facebook

He took my Cyber Cherry.

I was on WordPress about a half hour when I started getting emails from complete strangers.

I suppose that’s to be expected, when you cruise around leaving comments that make you sound like Slut Bag McFucksticks  sassy.

 

Dear Samara:
I am currently incarcerated in the state of Kentucky for murders I did not commit. I would love to get to know you. Perhaps when I am released, I can take you to a White Supremacy meeting and then for a Starbucks Pumpkin Latte? In the meantime, I would appreciate it if you would masturbate and send me your panties.

Sincerely,
Guy Who Keeps Severed Heads in His Refrigerator

 

When an incredibly sweet, sincere man emailed me, politely asking if he could write me, I was thrilled.

Don’t roll your eyes. I was NEW here.

The politeness lasted about a day. It escalated quickly, into declarations of attraction and discussing the possibilities of what we would do if we actually were with one another.

It was my inauguration into the seamy and titillating underbelly of the online world. That’s what happened to a lot of us who got married before the Internet revolutionized communication and fundamentally changed the way we lead our lives.

We never sexted.

 

Did you know there are sexting acronyms?

GYPO – Get your pants off

GNRN – Get naked right now

FMH – Fuck me harder

 

And the lesser known:

MPICIMFP – My penis is caught in my flip phone

AMAMCF – Ask me about my cheese fetish

GERE – I have a thing for gerbils

BALL911 – Call 911, balls sliced badly while shaving

DANZA – I just had sex with Tony Danza

 

I was baffled by the logistics. What exactly is the objective? I only have two hands. Are we supposed to be masturbating? And then typing? And masturbating? And typing?

Even though women have been scientifically proven to be quite good at multi-tasking, I’m strongly right handed. I tend to rely a lot on that hand for both masturbating AND typing. So, simultaneously, neither of them are getting done efficiently.

 

My new online friend became my new best friend, emailing me all day, every day. Having someone who is that interested in you is a heady feeling.

Until they’re not.

With no warning, he suddenly dropped off the face of the earth. I was devastated, because I didn’t know back then how poorly people can treat one another in the cyber world.

 

I got over it. Obviously. And went on to form amazing friendships in the online world.

 

 

I actually healed my relationship with my very first online friend. We’ve moved past what happened between us; how insensitive he was, and how badly I acted towards him as a result. He was in the middle of a horrible time in his life, and disappearing like that was not something he meant personally towards me.

I love our online friendship now. It’s filled with genuine affection and admiration for one another. And I believe him to be, like many people, a good, though flawed, human being whose heart is in the right place.

 

Or…is it?

 

Recently, I’ve become close with a talented erotica writer. She’s had her share of online drama, and eventually, opened up to me about some of the specifics of her online dalliances.

 

At one point, she was very attracted to the same man who had pursued me online. And she sent him gorgeously written, very sexy erotica stories – via Facebook messenger. Stories about the two of them.

Basically, she was sexting the beejesus out of him, and he was loving it! Who wouldn’t?

The juicy part of this tale? She began pouring her sexual heart out to him exactly at the time when he abruptly withdrew from my life.

 

Oh, shit.

REALLY?

 

I’m sure his life did implode. But these dates are too exact to be coincidental.

Ugh. I suppose, on some level, I wanted to think I was “special” (Stop fucking rolling your eyes at me!)

 

He was one of the few honorable men I’ve met online. I know there are many; I just don’t attract them (jeez, I wonder why? Maybe it’s because I blog about blow jobs and dildos and sluts, oh my!)

And I guess, even the most honorable…are not so? I’m not certain. My bullshit radar doesn’t work well online.

 

The proliferation of technologies like social networks, instant and ephemeral messaging, and even basic stuff like e-mail, has made the online world a breeding ground for some unhealthy interactions. It’s a rogue’s paradise; a dystopian Mad-Max type of culture for which there are no repercussions for many kinds of sociopathic behavior.

Add to that the availability of sexual stimulation 24/7, and we have a major societal mess on our hands.

 

The sad thing for me is how unfazed I am by all this. A year ago, as a newbie, I would have been devastated to learn how easily someone can switch sexting partners. Now? It seems par for the course.

 

HOWEVER

I may have lost a bit of my sparkle, but I’m not tarnished.

I believe in the power of online friendships. I have been supported online in ways that I never have in real life. I have too many loving, loyal online friends, male and female, NOT to believe in them.

I will say, though, that the best of my online friends – we’ve moved past “online only” and have texted, spoken or Skyped. If I’ve known you online a long time, and I absolutely have to log into Facebook to interact with you,

are we really friends?

 

If there’s anyone left out there who is new to these kinds of exchanges, please consider this:

If someone is willing to get sexual with you online, male or female, this is probably what that person does. In general. It doesn’t mean they’re wrong, or you’re wrong, or sexting is wrong.

It’s just not unique to YOU.

 

Technology has completely changed the notion of space and time, breaking down barriers in ways we never thought possible. And online sexual relationships have never been easier, thanks to cellphones, text messaging, social networks – and shifting ethics.

What hasn’t changed is the need to feel special. Behind the words on your screen, right now, is ME.

A living breathing person, whose heart beats real blood.

Think about that before you hit “send.”

 

09

 

Have you had some strange online encounters?  Or do you tend to keep away from that world?
Talk to me.  I’m listening.