At the start of the year, I tweeted about how hard it was to make friends as an adult, and a lot of people seemed to relate and replied saying how hard it is for them too. When I first saw the replies, I was immediately thrilled that I wasn’t just a being a weirdo that couldn’t make friends, but it made me think about all the reasons that it is so hard to make friends and meet people as we get older.
So, this blog post has been 10 months in the making…
We all live 7000000 miles apart now
I went to uni roughly 500 miles away from my school friends, so when I moved, met my husband and settled in Scotland it was safe to say that those friendships would probably wither away, and they did. It happens right? We’ve all started lives in new parts of the country, whether it’s London, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, bloody half way across the world, life takes you in different directions and that sometimes means it’s harder to keep your friendships going.
I’ve tried to reboot old friendships from my home town and it’s tough, I feel like we’ve all changed SO much and grown into completely different people that it’s like making new friends all over again. It’s getting to know a new person because you haven’t seen them in almost 10 years, and a lot can change in 10 years. A LOT. Not only that, but when I visit home, I’m there for a short time and in that time I want to see my family because they don’t live round the corner from me and I’m a needy biatch. Let’s be real.
We all have that one friend that no matter how long you go without seeing them, it will feel like yesterday though. They are the best ones.
Meeting people is different
The hardest thing about making friends as an adult has got to be actually meeting people in the first place. It’s not like school where you’re thrown into either a tutor group or classes together and you build your friendship group around that, oh god no, you have to go out of your way to actually meet people.
I mean, yes, you are thrown together with the people you work with, but most people are happy to close the office door after a stressful week at work and leave it there. Your work bestie is your work bestie, and is probably not the person you’re messaging on whatsapp all day.
So yeah, meeting people is hard. I’m very lucky because instagram has brought my best friends into my life, and without it I wouldn’t have met them. That is mainly due to the instagram blogging community, when you’re going to the same events and stuff like that, it’s a pretty good way to meet people who have the same interests as you. Thanks to instagram I have pals now haha (even though it feels like I know every aspect of everyone I follow on instagram’s life).
I’m much pickier
At school when you get thrown together, you’re happy with the friends that you were lumped with, you grow together and it’s easy because you’re spending 6 hours a day together all day.
Time is precious when you’re old AF and you’re damn right I am going to be picky with who I choose to spend it with. Time has never been so precious, so I’m much more likely to be done with friendships a lot more quickly that I used to be.
There were times where I would feel absolute anguish over a fall out, or I would run back to people that used me or treated me like crap, but not anymore. If I’m your friend, I am legit the best friend ever, I will go above and beyond to help you with anything and everything no matter how I am treated and that used to be my downfall.
Now I’m kind of the opposite (which has it’s pros and cons)… I now have a very low threshold at which when I’ve had enough, then well… I’ve had enough, I’ve learned to recognise when people are using me and I don’t even give it a second thought when it comes to cutting those toxic and painful people out now. Like Monica and Phoebe style.
I care more now than I did then
Do you think when I was 12 that I gave a single hoo haa about what anyone thought of me? Nope, I honestly could not have cared less. But now, I’m this shy, insecure woman who is constantly just hoping that people will like me and whether I just said something that might offend them (even though it probably definitely didn’t).
I blame university. I had some pretty crappy friends at university, and it ruined meeting new people for me.
Now I’m constantly second guessing whether I’ve weirded someone out by being too friendly, or I think that I’m harassing someone just by asking if they want to go for a coffee. It’s really fun *not*
But it’s weird how as I’ve got older I’ve started to overthink every single encounter I have with people. It’s pretty shite, I can’t lie.
I want to share all my friends with my husband
Don’t get me wrong, I love having girl time with my gal pals every now and again… but my husband is my actual best friend so if we can all hang out together then it’s a quadruple bonus.
If you’re weird about hanging out with friend’s boyfriend/girlfriend/spouse then that’s a bit of a red flag for me. There are plenty of Steve’s friends that have turned into *our* friend over time, and it’s the absolute best. If we can all hang out together and have fun, then it’s even better right?
I’m not here for girls that don’t understand if you want to include your husband, or boys that are desperate for a ‘boys night’ all the time and get grumpy if you EVER want to hang out and drink altogether. Some of my bestest nights out ever have been when I’ve third wheeled one of Steve’s boys nights.
Possessive friends are odd.
Maintaining new friendships is bloody hard
Jesus, we’re all so busy because ADULT LIFE IS HARD. We literally have a calendar up in our flat with our plans filled out into it, and every single one of our weekends are jam packed until the middle of December. I feel like I go months without seeing people, or make loose plans to see people and grab a coffee and then it never materialises because life is bloody busy.
If we’re not working, we’re food shopping, or looking after our friends cat, or doing DIY in the flat, or seeing our family, or actually trying to have a date night once in a while. Trying to find time to maintain even the basic life activities on a daily basis is hard, let alone throwing in trying to maintain new friendships.
I say new friendships too because new ones are a wee bit harder to maintain in my opinion. You’re still not quite comfortable enough to come over and just slob on the sofa not really talking, eating junk food or come along while we do our boring life chores. It’s all, dressing up and going to nice places, you know? You haven’t seen me throw up into a bucket with a bit of a chip stuck my cheek yet…
But, it is possible
IT IS POSSIBLE. I didn’t think it would be, and I didn’t know how I was going to get there, but I did.
I met people, I made friends like a good old fashioned adult and I finally believe that it’s possible to meet new people now. You can do it, you just have to be willing be put yourself out there. Go to events, host a meet up, or just speak to people when you’re out in your favourite places. It can’t go that badly, right?
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