When I was nineteen, I had one of the most disturbing experiences of my life. I was working at a summer job where I struck up an acquaintance with Luis, one of the full-time employees. Luis was a recent immigrant from the Dominican Republic and I was very interested in learning about his country, so we began taking breaks and occasional lunches together. I thought we were becoming good friends but suddenly, Luis changed. He refused my company and soon stopped talking to me unless our jobs required it. Even worse, when I passed his desk, he would glance at me and begin muttering angrily under his breath. I couldn't figure out what was wrong, so I asked Luis if I had offended him in some way. His reply was simple: "You know what you have done!" When I asked other employees what was wrong, they told me that Luis was sure I was trying to steal his girlfriend Maria, and that I had been saying nasty things about him to the boss. This was completely false. Maria didn't care for him and certainly did not consider herself to be his girlfriend. Furthermore, I had never said anything negative about him to anyone. His behavior became more erratic until one day he failed to show up for work. A few months later, I learned that he had been hospitalized following a suicide attempt.
--Robert A. Baron