Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Imaginary Friend

Do you have one? Did you have one? Does your child have one?

I would love to hear some stories...
There was a treasury on Etsy some time ago called "Imaginary Friends", and that got me thinking. I was always fascinated by this subject. Back where I was growing up, there was no such term "imaginary friend". Yet my little brother had 2. And that was my first encounter with this concept. My brother had an imaginary cat friend, who was white and was called Vladimir (just like my absent-from-my-life-father). And the other one I think was a cat too...Petrovas'ka...but somehow I always imagined him as a little dwarf. And my brother would talk about them, and make stories, and I could never quite grasp what was happening. I was much older, and the border between fantasy and reality was already much stronger, but the imaginary world still was quite interesting.
Now that I think about it the Swedish Karlsson-on-the-Roof was an imaginary friend.

Totoro is sure also one of them.
And if I could pick one myself I would want someone like this (click to see more works by this wonderful artist)


bluedogrose said...

I never had an imaginary friend, but I was jealous of other kids who had them.

Amanda Conley said...

great blog! Found you through twitter. My sister swore there was a pack of dogs in the woods behind our house when we were little, and the leader of the pack was a pink dog named Pinkie. Not sure they were friends...but they were definitely imaginary!

Jennifer MacNeill-Traylor said...

My daughter just turned 3 yesterday and she is always talking about her imaginary friends. She is very offened when you don't acknowledge then. Sometimes we step or sit on them and she gets mad. Her latest one is named Monte Carlo and she was introduced to her by an Amish girl. I have NO idea where she is getting any of this:)
~Jen (love your work, btw)

The Empty Envelope said...

I had an imaginary friend who was a monkey named Nancy. My eldest really hasn't had one and I think my youngest maybe had a vague one. Love the cat painting.

Jessie Lilac said...

When he was little, my middle son would talk to his 2 imaginary friends through the letterbox. We named our youngest son after one of them because I liked the name (Beda). We later found out that the land used to be a Roman encampment and the names 'Beda' and 'Sulla', the names he gave his 2 friends could have been names from that time....weird isn't it?!x

Jennifer Rose said...

I don't remember having an imaginary friend, don't think my sister had one either. I do remember talking to my cat stuffed animal like she was my friend. i think my mom still has it, chewed on nose and all :p

Vita said...

OH I LOVE reading your stories!!!
pink dogs, people from the past, Monte Carlo :))) monkeys and talking to stuffed cats!!! Wow!!!! This will give me some food for the thoughts!:)

rossichka said...

A very interesting theme with very interesting comments. I found a lot of similar cases in some Bulgarian chat forums for parents.
I think that the imaginary friend is a sign that the child lacks something or someone; that it's lonely or simply has a strong imagination.
About 10 years ago I watched a wonderful movie with Whoopi Goldberg and Gerard Depardieu - BOGUS (1996). If you haven't seen it, you should do it by all means! Here's the plot: "it tells the story of a boy named Albert Franklin, the son of a Las Vegas magician's assistant who dies in a car crash. The boy is sent to New Jersey to live with his mother's foster sister, Harriet, who has trouble coping with sudden parenthood. Albert invents an imaginary friend named Bogus, a French magician, who helps the boy cope with his transition. Gradually Harriet, who can also see Bogus, also comes to terms with her new situation as well."


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