My family has never been close. I was an only child. While my parents were not overly involved in my life, their love for me was over-protective. They isolated me from the world and most social activity. So I came to cling to them, suffering from fear of abandonment from a very young age. I never really believed them when they said they were not going to die for a really, really long time, but all little kids wear out and fall asleep eventually.

I was not allowed to sleep over at other people's houses much, and because of this insulation, I was always uncomfortable doing so, even when it was what I wanted to do. Because of a car wreck I was in at 15, my parents refused to help me get my license out of fear, so I didn't get it until I was 19 and a junior in college.

I didn't make any real friends until I left my parents and went off to college at 16, whereupon I fell right into another co-dependant relationship for four more years. After that, I have established myself again as being self-sufficient, independant and completely isolated emotionally, physically and otherwise, which was pretty much the way I'd been my whole life.

Now I have to link all these behaviors and have found that they have threaded into so many facets of my life that I can't seem to escape them. I have a very hard time allowing people to get close to me, or rather, close to me for the long haul; I am very quick to form strong bonds but will drop them at a moment's notice out of fear and self-defeat. People have to work that much harder to prove themselves to me. I push people away and contend that I don't need them. I get defensive when people tell me that I have problems. I run away from people. I live alone and don't miss people except when I want to do something social.

I have close friends and I love them dearly, but they've always been far away. I've never had anyone I love die on me, so I don't always know to appreciate what I have.

Being self-sufficient isn't bad. Being able to take care of yourself is far from a detriment. It's the self-defeating mentality that no one could love me as I am, that anyone will want to put up with all this baggage.

And then to realize all this now is pretty intense.