When offered the chance to get out, to choose our own communities, to choose our own friends, to relate to our families on our own terms, to get out from under inherited obligations of status and obedience, many of us choose to get out. But this is not to eschew commitment. This is not to give up on happiness. Few of us can live happily wholly unencumbered by commitment. To know freedom from the life of the tribe is to demand more from our lovers and our friends because we have chosen them; they are really ours. The flip-side is that we owe more, too. It’s true that commitments of choice are more tenuous than commitments of fate. College friends are more fickle that childhood friends who seem more fickle than blood, and there is some anxiety in this for those of us who depend more on what we have chosen than on what we have been given. Some of us are very lucky and would freely affirm, again and again, the bonds we fell into as children, or at birth. But some of us, the weirdos especially, are less lucky and fall mostly into loneliness when young. Some of us first meet our best friends as disembodied text on a glowing plane. But we can and do come to cherish these ghosts more than our own flesh and blood through the magic of mutual comprehension and love of the things that make us most fully separate, the things that make us feel most alien and alone