A Testing Relationship: My Friend Ann

We all have that one friend who supports us one minute, but makes us feel insecure the next; for me this is my good friend Ann. We became friends at school when I was 14, and have remained a huge part of each others lives ever since, but our relationship has   experienced highs and lows unlike any other I know.

I remember the first day we met; I was the shy, geeky 14 year old and she was the loud in your face girl who’s opinion would stick in your head worse than the latest One Direction tune. But they say that opposites attract, and perhaps our differences bought us closer together; it wasn’t long before Ann started to influence my life in ways which resulted in me going off the rails. Ann would always be in my head with her loud and proud opinions, which appealed to my cautious and wary nature, and she always had a way of making sure I thought about every possible outcome before making a decision; even as small as doing a handstand against the wall, as she was convinced it would end badly for me.

But the devilish side of Ann had my emotions running high, as I struggled to find myself as a 14 year old hormone driven teenager. I saw her constantly rebelling, and this crept in to my head more and more each day; it got to the point where I went off food, kept crying, running away to my friends house and even once took a knife and attempted to harm myself as I just wanted to escape the pressure she was putting me under; the pressure to rebel and be different, as she just couldn’t understand why I was so cautious all the time.

Understandably, my parents were not happy with what was happening; they knew that teenagers had rebellious friends, but to see their own daughter turning into something she wasn’t was heartbreaking. As I spiralled out of control my parents became more and more desperate, with my Dad once screaming in my face to just calm down and be normal, as my Mum even thought about having me adopted. With this heartbreaking revelation, I decided to exercise some control and cut Ann out, which wasn’t easy, as even though she had caused me so much pain, she was still a huge part of my life.

I was taken out of school and away from Ann, put on anti depressants and saw an irrational thoughts therapist for three years on and off. With all of these measures put in place I began to calm down, feel better and stop rebelling; with Ann out of my life it made things easier, just like an ex that you never see again. But a few years later I bumped into her and felt a rush of emotions; panic, pain, anger, sadness and empathy. She begged to talk to me, and even after all that my therapist had said I just had to listen…

Ann apologised for what she had caused, as she had no idea what I was going through and never meant to be such a negative influence on my life. I said I didn’t blame her for what happened, and that once time had passed I would like her to be a small part of my life again. Now, 14 years on, Ann sometimes contacts me, and has even stayed with me for a couple of weeks; she continues to be rebellious but I have accepted her ways and know that some friends can make your life hell one minute and utterly joyous the next, but I wouldn’t have it any other way with my dear friend Anxiety.

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