The power of imagination and friendship

Whether you’re willing to openly admit it or not, everyone has had some sort of imaginary friend. Some grow up and completely forget about their invisible pal; it’ll only get mentioned once in a while at embarrassing family dinners where everyone is reminiscing of that time you were wandering round a park talking to yourself…just me? However, some stick in your memory; the idea a young child has the capability to create a whole person is a fascinating thing. Those imaginary friends that stick in our memory as we grow up are significant to our growth as a person.

Letting go

Think about it, a child, who has not yet learnt to read, never mind socialised with children of their age, has created another person, whom they talk to and experience their young life with. This is why imagination is such a powerful concept; even at the age of three or four we are hugely influenced by the contents in our head. However, as important as it is to have an imaginary friend it’s as equally important to let them go.  Moving on is an important part of life, which is something we learn at a young age. It’s a lesson learnt universally by children, we grow and leave our favourite toy in the back of the cupboard. It’s the same idea with imaginary friends, someone who had been in our mind for years slowly fades into the back of our memory.

I recall having quite a few imaginary friends through childhood; however, the only one I can still vividly remember is Cody who lived in a bubble and stuck by me for years. Which is unusual, children are impressionable young people who are constantly changing and adapting to new situations, so to sustain an idea in your head over years is quite an impressive talent to have, especially coming from someone just learning how to read. Therefore, this is why imaginary friends are vital, they give a child a constant in a life that is always developing and growing.

An antidote to loneliness

One of the reasons I believe people begin to imagine friends is the inevitability of loneliness, I think this applies to lots of children. Whether you’re the only child in your family, or you have trouble with friends from a young age, creating something out of your own imagination that is free to do whatever you wish is comforting. It’s like creating your own story, which you can change and develop in your own way. It’s incredibly unique to you, which is why imagination is such a powerful and important aspect to both your childhood and adulthood.

Creative thinking

Theoretically, creating imaginary friends as a child may well lead to an interest in creative writing at an older age. This is definitely true regarding myself, whether it applies to a wider audience is unknown. The truth behind the matter is, however, that creating imaginary friends is like creating a character like authors do in order to tell their stories. This is another vital reason why imaginary friends are so significant in all of our lives. 

Did you have any imaginary friends? Let us know in the comments!