For the last couple of years, I've drifted out of touch with a close friend I've known in Furry online for the last dozen years or so, going back to my original forays in Furry when I arranged for my first persistent Net connection in 2001. Amongst other things, he was a close confidant in both getting my confidence up to push my comfort zone (I was in pretty rough psychological shape in those days; I was diagnosed with acute schizophrenia and bipolar disorder [manic-depression] in 1994 when I was 17, and it took a lot to get me out of my self-imposed shell at that point ) and feel comfortable with what my loins were directing me to do (i.e. helping me learn about my sexuality; in this case, a certain range of physical fetishes, including interactions with more than one of his IC characters) as well as inspire my confidence in drawing, which I've continued to improve upon through the present day.
I hadn't been in touch with him in e-mail or via his IC persona on FurryMUCK for the better part of a year when all of this began to occur to me, and I know as a prolific writer (not to mention an exceptionally good one) of fiction and of more than one webcomic (one of which I did fill-in artwork for over a half-dozen pages, which is kind of neat to recall given my technical limitations at the time), a body's going to be busy, and thinking about creative direction and getting the writing or art done that one wants to.
I'd posted “parent replies” to a half-dozen comments he made personally over the last couple of years on FurAffinity artwork pages, none of which were replied to. This isn't unusual in general experience, especially when a given piece of work gets dozens of individual posters supplying kudos. But it stuck in my mind as odd that he of all people wouldn't post back even once in my case. I put it aside, hoping I could touch base with him at some point not too far along the way.
The sharp shock came about a month or so ago. After a long hiatus, he decided to bring to an end one of the first comics I'd read from my own “Day One” all those years ago, and while I knew I'd miss reading it, this comic was a real labour of love for him and I suspected it was hurting him deeply that he was parting the ways with it and its ongoing creation. I posted what I wanted to be a comfort and a thanks for his keeping this comic going for as long as it ran, and for the kind of confidence he and it inspired in me, using my Gravatar/Wordpress account (under the same pseudonym attached to this question).
My comment post was held in moderation for two days and subsequently rejected, and does not appear on the final page of the comic's comments.
This really bothered me, and while I didn't want to jump to any conclusions without speaking to him in person, well ... it fit together in my head, accurately or not, that something was probably not kosher between us. Fate and poor chance don't line these sorts of things up, at least not in my experience.
I'm really not sure where to go from here. If there has been some unpleasantness that I'm unaware of that's soured our friendship, I don't want to add the burden of it by picking at small things akin to what I've mentioned in lieu of something a lot worse which, to be fair, might not involve me directly at all and I would have no business sticking my muzzle into.
That said, I really wanted to ask you, Papa Bear, what you would do were you in a situation like this. There has been no communication between my friend and I, at all, for almost two years, save for what I've mentioned. We certainly didn't part on anything approaching poor terms, and I couldn't tell you anything that has gone past my screen or between us since then that I have any inkling would put a stop to said friendship.
Thanks for taking the time to read this, ami ours.
-2Paw (age 36, Toronto)
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This is a real puzzle to me as well. Since you have had no communication with him and he does not reply to your posts, it is impossible to know what is going through his mind and why he is not writing or talking to you. Speculating as to why would be an exercise in futility.
Therefore, two things: 1) If you haven’t already, start putting the word out that you are looking for your friend, that you are concerned about him, and any information anyone can give you would be appreciated, and 2) I am asking my readers that if you know 2Paw and might know his friend, please reply to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will forward your message to him.
2Paw, if you can, please provide the name of your friend. That would help a lot.
Let’s see if we can figure this out.
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