Anyone close to me will be able to tell you how easily I get attached to people – parental figures mostly. I think it’s happened since a young age but I only realised it in high school, year 9 to be exact (Age 14/15 for those not in the UK).
Now I don’t want to go into detail about what happened in year 9, but I will say that I got close to one of my teachers; she was lovely and we got on well. First of all I saw her as being like a second Mum – the parental figure – but as time went on I started to see her as more of a best friend, which is where it got out of hand and I took it too far. I like to forget that year 9 ever happened, but it did teach me a lesson and it made me realise my attachment issue and showed me what not to do if I found myself getting attached again.
In year 10 I had a new English teacher, I’d seen her around school before and knew who she was because she was head of English, and I’d heard nice things about her so I knew it’d be a good 2 years of English because we had the same teachers for our subjects for both of our GCSE years. For the first few months everything was fine and she was just like any other teacher, but she was one of those teachers who often got off track and would tell us little stories about her life, so I soon found out that we had a lot in common. I started talking to her outside of lessons at break times and lunchtimes and we got on really well, I found myself telling her things I didn’t even tell my parents and before I knew it I was attached. This time though, I knew what not to do. I told myself that if I found myself getting too close I’d back off before I went and ruined everything, because I genuinely did feel that I could talk to her about anything, and I needed someone like that in my life, yeah I had my friends, but sometimes it was nice to have an adult to talk to – I’ve never been close enough to my parents to talk to them about anything, even now I hardly tell them anything, and I think that’s where my attachment issues come from, I’m not close to my parents so without even realising it I’m always looking for a parental figure to be close to.
So anyway, this time round I managed to not let my attachment go too far, I may have gone a little over the top with her birthday presents in year 11 but that was partly because her birthday was also the day of my last exam and therefore my last day of high school so it was also like a thank you for being such a good teacher for the previous 2 years – she loved the presents I got her so it was all fine.
My high school also runs a college – which I went to – so I still saw her around, not so much as I used to but still enough for us to have a little chat whenever we saw each other. It did get me down a little that I didn’t see her as much as I did in high school but I got used to it. For Christmas that year I gave her a little keyring that I’d made with a photo of the two of us that I’d had taken on our ‘official’ last day of school back in May of that year, she hugged me and said thank you and that she loved it. There isn’t really much else to say about college because I didn’t see her often enough, but the last time I saw her was just before February half term in year 13 (age 17/18), and I haven’t seen her since, so that’s about 3 and a half years now. I’d told her that I’d stay in contact after I left college but that proved to be harder than I thought.
Because I finished college in June and hadn’t seen her since February and we weren’t allowed onto the high school site unless we had a lesson there, I had no way of talking to her to give her my email address or anything for us to stay in touch, and by the time I thought of sending an email to her school email address it was too late because they were changing over to a new email system. I tried Facebook but as she told us many times in English, she doesn’t use hers because she hates Facebook. So that really leaves me with only one option: call or visit the school and ask to speak to her. But I have anxiety, I can’t do that out of fear they’ll just think I’m crazy and turn me away.
It doesn’t bother me that we’re not in contact as much as it used to, but I do still have days where things happen or I’m just feeling down and I think “I’d kill to talk to her and get some advice”, but mostly I’d just like to have a catch up and see how she’s doing, and me and Amber were saying a few weeks ago that we would love to get her drunk because honestly it would be hilarious! But it doesn’t look like we’ll be in contact anytime soon so for now I’m just going to have to carry on dealing with my attachment and hope that one day there’s a miracle and she logs into her Facebook account and sees my friend request.
I was going to include the photo of us in this post but I’ve decided against it because I don’t know if she’d be okay with me using it. But the point of this post is that whilst I have attachment issues, that doesn’t make me “weird” or “not normal”, because honestly nobody is “normal”, everyone is different. “Normality” is something we create in our heads, we all have our own ideas about what’s normal, but nothing is, not really. My attachment issues, along with my anxiety, are just a part of who I am, and I’m sorry but if you know me and you can’t deal with certain things about me then you don’t deserve to be in my life.