How imaginary friends went from a parental worry to a badge of honour

I find this kind of thing really interesting. Terry Pratchett used to explore this concept a fair bit in the witches arc of the discworld novels.

And another book recommendation that popped into my head:

Really takes the concept and flies off with it :slight_smile:

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I had a rich imaginary life growing up, and I enjoyed it immensely. It was really a survival mechanism, but I’m not going to get into that. I do think it really helped me externalize things, instead of pretending that I was in complete control of everything. When I grew out of it and became a teenager, I internalized everything and it made me fairly miserable.

I had a friend a while back who started talking to his shadow which he gave a personality and a name. When his parents caught him they freaked out. He basically stopped to avoid an exorcism. Apparently that’s what happens when you grow up in Rome, GA and your parents are super-conservative Christians.


River is another one about a detective with imaginary friends. He’s not violent like Luther, just generally an asshole.


River would be a poor example of a person with imaginary friends who has adjusted well.


That last scene outside the restaurant - I was laughing, and then I remembered what was actually happening and I was like “whoa this is messed up

You had (have?) a friend from Rome? My hometown, man. It’s pretty conservative and there are some super-conservative churches around there. I’m not surprised that happened to him.

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When in Rome, burn it?

No, much of my family is still there and it seems better than it was when I left. At least, there are things to do now when there wasn’t much when I was a teen.

Plus, I’m fresh out of fiddles.


I actually haven’t watched all of it yet, but I did get to a speech about how people who are different aren’t wanted in society. I was like, “Yeah, that’s about right.”

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okay, this is an understandable reason. you’re excused.


My parents got really caught up in the Satanic Panic- if they didn’t understand it, it was of the devil… and they didn’t understand quite a bit. After that was the whole pre-Y2K Tribulation Terror, but that was a whole other can of worms.


My imaginary friend told me to wait by the corner while he finished doing something. Turned out he was fucking with me and started hanging out with the cool kids’ imaginary friends.

Oh, wait, that was my real friend.




[post must be at least 6 characters…should I have written “or lute?”]


Ah, yes. anachronism… Unless he was a time traveler? But I don’t have one of those either.

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Oh yeah, we met at GSU. I still consider him a friend, we’ve just lost touch. I remember we bonded over the shared experience of our parents waking us up at the crack of dawn to read our respective religious texts.

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