I was one of the only girls in Kindergarten to have a guy best friend. Jeremy and I did all of the typical things - play dates, birthday parties, family dinners.
He always had certain oddities though: he would go through violent temper tantrums and would occasionally be very romantically aggressive with little 5 year old me.
Shortly after my 7th birthday party, Jeremy left the country. I can't say I was too upset about it; by the time he left, he had already worn out my patience and I avoided him as often as possible.
He had only been gone for a couple of months when my mom received a photo album in the mail, full of pictures from my 7th birthday.
Apparently, Jeremy's mom had secretly been taking pictures of us together and put them in a photo album that she claimed was for our wedding.
My mom and I laughed it off as a very strange gesture and decided to ignore it.
We didn't hear from the family for a long time.
When we all got Facebook accounts around 8th grade, many of my close childhood friends began getting strange messages from Jeremy,
asking for my personal information and begging them to put him in contact with me. He would message them every day, desperate for my contact details, where I lived, and pictures of me.
Around this time, he started posting old pictures of me online and circling my face in our class photos.
This was already weird enough, so when a friend of mine accidentally linked him to my Facebook profile, I shot his friend request into outer space and never looked at his profile again.
One day in 10th grade, I was looking through my message requests mostly expecting spam when I came across his messages. Hundreds of messages.
"I've been looking for you for a long time. Answer."
"[his email] message me. I have been searching for you for many years."
"Where are you? Reply, I'm starting to get angry."
"Reply. I need to talk to you."
Messages like this, every month or so, for the past three years. Keep in mind that I hadn't seen this kid since I was 7 years old, so I noped myself right out of there and blocked him.
Fast forward a few years, I'm in college and checking through my message requests again. There he was, under a new Facebook account, messaging me the same things as he used to.
Every month, for six years.
When I asked my friends to check their message requests, they got the same thing: Where is HelpWheresMyDad, how is she, how do I contact her, have you spoken to her, what did she do today,
where does she live, what school does she go to. Relentlessly. I finally messaged him that I was tired of his shit and that he could not message me any more.
Some investigation of his Facebook page proved that he had since named his dog after me, and was telling people that I was his girlfriend. Blocked again.
About a year later, I made an Instagram account.
A couple of months after that, he started messaging me: long nonsensical messages, how he sees dark spots, how he has only thought about me for fifteen years, he dreams about me,
how he’s mentally unstable, he's going to find me, he found my mom’s email, he’s in love with me, he wants to transfer to my college.
His Instagram profile is littered with pictures of him with weapons - mostly large knives.
I’m now in my 3rd year of university. His last message to me was 3 days ago, but I haven’t blocked him because I sort of feel safer knowing exactly what he has to say to me.
Sorry if this is an unsatisfying ending, but it is what it is. If I go missing, you all know where to find me. Wish me luck.