My Wounded Inner Child

I recently got pushed to articulate why I fear being clingy.

(I’m only a tad less lonely and clingy because I have God, but that does make a difference.)

Instead of hanging around people and trying to start up conversations, I typically march out of a room or go sit in a corner and read a book.

I guess I fear being clingy because I am clingy. I used to cling to Cathy Seipp. I just hate this part of myself.

When I’m knocked off-stride, I return to the four-year-old who just lost his mom.

So why don’t I embrace my wounded inner child?

I do through my blogging and occasionally with very close friends and a good therapist.

I often lack a good antennae for when people are sick of my company, but when I finally do notice, I march off. I have too much pride to hang around.

It wasn’t until eighth grade that I realized I could phone girls. The hottest girl in my grade was Denise Bernard. I’d been yearning for her since coming to America in sixth grade (1977). She was asked if she liked any guy. She listed three she might be interested in. I was one of them. I was over the moon with excitement and I proceeded to call her every day and to push her to make up her mind which guy she liked.

Naturally, she quickly tired of my calls and any attraction she felt for me died.

It took two months until a friend pulled me aside and mentioned that Denise was getting sick of my calls.

Denise was the first girl I ever asked out on a date. It took three attempts (the first two times she said she had to go to a horse show).

It was the summer of 1981 (between ninth and tenth grade). I asked Denise to the first game of the resumed baseball season (after the strike).

We rode in the back of a friend’s pick-up truck to Candlestick park.

My best friend’s younger sister, Jenny, said on the drive, "Luke, you’re wearing mismatched socks."

While trying to find our seats, I marched 100 yards ahead of Denise trying to get my bearings. All during the game, I was making bets with my best buddy Andy. Denise found this really obnoxious.

There was no second date.

If only she knew what a famous blogger I’d become!

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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