When On-Line Friends Disappear
I've been active on-line (blogging, chatrooms, Second Life, etc.) for years. I've developed a lot of wonderful friendships via the internet over the years...several people I care about deeply. We all, however, tend to keep an anonimity in tact with those relationships...know first name but not last, state but not city, etc. It's for safeties sake...don't want someone we don't really know going stalker or psycho on us.
Those that I am REALLY close to, I have phone numbers and such for...just in case one of us drops offline we can check up on each other, not to mention chat now and then. Those I don't have contact information for, however...it worries me some times. What if they were to disappear...never login again, not answer e-mails...the worry and wondering would be frustrating at best. I've had this happen before, but they eventually showed back up somehow, much to my relief.
I've a situation with one such friend. Well, I actually have this person's phone number, but the last I talked to him, he wasn't living at that house any more. This dear man, an intelligent, funny, soft-hearted person, is bi-polar and has suffered from horrible bouts of depression and other suffering. The last I talked to him, he had been in the hospital, and things had gone terribly wrong with his wife so he had moved out. He was miserable...missing his children, missing her, just completely miserable and so very down. There's only so much you can do from 2000 miles away...*sigh*
Well, I haven't heard from him now for months. Honestly, I'm worried sick. He's had a history of attempting suicide and I'm scared to death that he's done it. I want to call that number I have and check on him, but I know I would get his wife... I guess you can say I'm scared to call...scared of what I'll find out. I've e-mailed several times with no response...which is not like him. Sometimes they're slow in coming, but he always respond.
If I didn't have a phone number, I'd be completely clueless and helpless. But I have a number...I'm going to call soon...I just can't stand it any more.
Update 10/8/08: HE'S OK :) *breathes sigh of relief*