August 2, 2020:

I have a girlfriend there, for a short time. I'm not nice to her.

She's brilliant, very pretty, always patient with me while I'm bouncing in all directions from ADHD and alcohol and drugs. I don't understand why she likes me. I'm quite funny, but I'm totally false. I don't share the "real" me, if there is a real me, with people at school. It would leave me vulnerable to the authorities, and I'm already sliding sliding sliding into the early onset depression which would color that time increasingly black. The main thing is, she can't even see what I look like. I'm hiding behind so much hair I'm deliberately invisible.

She's committed to the school. She's on the stage crew, the Model U.N. She seeks me out somehow, at a time when I'm unequipped and unprepared to know what to do with that.

I like her. I truly do. We play tennis, hang out, hold hands, kiss. She's kind and emotionally generous.

Why am I not nice to her?

At the time I don't know. Only that being near her leaves me anxious. I'm nervous with her.

Now I understand perfectly. I was worried my lies would come undone. That she'd find the whites in my daypack, smell the rum on my breath, put two and two together that when I wasn't at school, which was nearly always, I was therefore somewhere else. To me, that was my "real" life, while high school was false, and I needed them separate, so that having a girlfriend from high school was threatening.

At the time I lacked those insights. I was all intuition, and habits, and amphetamine and incipient depression. I liked her but wasn't nice with her, until after only two or three weeks I called it off. Then I felt safe again, although I could not have put it in those terms.

I'm sorry I treated her poorly. She deserved better. I remember her crying and I hate that picture. I hope she moved on to someone so much better for her than me.