Summer of ’69

A lot of people right now have an inordinate amount of free time on their hands. How this equates in terms of action covers the entire range of human experience: people learning to draw, posting pictures of their First Loaf as if it were an offspring, others rediscovering their childhoods in a haze of gauzy, soft focus photographs. It is at times like this I am REALLY pleased Facebook never became a Thing.

I exist in other people’s lives via photographic memory. However, with very few exceptions, none of those people currently are a part of my existence. There was an extremely intentional effort to remove nearly all of them when it became apparent that the means by which I’d formed relationships was effectively broken. None of them were an issue: this was all about me.

Nearly two decades on I’m still attempting to piece together how this all works.


At some point, inevitably, past and present will collide. This will undoubtedly coincide with me publishing something or turning up somewhere where a member of the past life sees me and works out we knew each other. I’m really hoping it takes place in relation with my work with Mind or Time to Talk, because then they’ll understand that really, they weren’t the problem. Nobody else was ever the problem back then.

Taking ownership of my mistakes has been an important and significant step forward. Of course, it doesn’t negate what happened or somehow lessen the impact. Other people have carried friends through their lives from childhood. It has taken me over 50 years to even feel remotely comfortable in my own skin. I don’t regret what’s been left behind, and as nobody has ever contacted me feeling the same way, I assume the same is true for them.

There’s been one attempt, when we were on holiday in California. If you’re reading this now, and there’s a good chance that is indeed the case, I’m really sorry. I was an idiot, and the relationship should never, ever have taken place. Nothing to do with you at all, and 100% entirely my fault. So much of my life before counselling now makes sense: how I was influenced by circumstance. How I took advantage of other people.

At least now I understand why all this happened in the first place.

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