Agustín Farias – Death To Stock
Should We Rid Ourselves Of Old Friendships That No Longer Serve Us?
Should we rid ourselves of old friendships that no longer serve us?
As we get older, we naturally drift apart from friends with whom we no longer have things in common.
Is it such a bad thing that we acknowledge change and want to leave some friendships behind? The following anon story explains precisely that.
Will you be ending connections and making new ones in 2023?
Since birth, we have been socialised into having friendships based on age and location, mostly gained from our educational establishments.
Your “best friends” were the people you spent every day with, learning and playing. Not once did I stop to wonder if we would have been so close had we not been thrown into the same environment together five days a week. With daily secret sharing and monthly sleepovers, I was sure that these were my best friends for life.
I recollect having a friendship group in Primary School consisting of three sets of best friends. One of the girls went on a family holiday for a month and returned to find that her best friend had a new best friend – simply because she hadn’t been around. She was, therefore, no longer part of our friendship group and had to find a new best friend. Sometimes life comes at you really fast. Primary school was cutthroat.
Nowadays, we are all juggling life – and our life stages depend on the choices we make throughout the years. It could be the decision to have children, start a career, travel, join a religious group, or do nothing at all in some cases. And as humans, we tend to gravitate towards people aligned with our life stage – or where we want to be.
Age is no longer an essential factor to me, having lost many friends over the years that I can no longer relate to just because we are all at different life stages.
I haven’t taken it personally, and I hope they haven’t, either. People grow and change, which is completely fine. No bad feelings over here.
On the other hand, some people grow and change much slower, which can also lead to distance. How many times have you bumped into someone you haven’t seen in years, only to realise that they behave the same way? They use the same vocabulary that really should have been left in secondary school. They frequent the same places and do the same things, yet you are almost unrecognisable.
I’m often proud of my growth when that happens.
Friends who became Mothers were the first that dropped off unexpectedly. I know it wasn’t intentional, but I was young and still wanted to party. If you weren’t out every weekend, chances are, I wouldn’t see you. I realise leaving a newborn infant leaves you with little time to yourself- let alone the upkeep of your friendships. So, after a few visits and “aww, so cute’s”, we naturally drifted.
I hope they didn’t blame me because I didn’t blame them either. We were just at different life stages, and we had other priorities.
The second set of friends were the ones with different aspirations in life. We fought so much because they no longer understood me. According to them, I had changed, grown up, spoke differently, acted arrogantly, and no longer had an interest in the same old shitty clubs and minimum wage jobs.
Can’t say I miss them, as I refuse to apologise for changing. This was a clear example of growing apart.
Agustín Farias – Death To Stock
I judge friendships based on the effort made by both parties.” – Anon.
We are all busy doing this thing called ‘life’, and if I haven’t spoken to someone in months, it doesn’t make them less of a friend. The only requirement I have is that they put in the effort when they have the time or when you need them.
The worst culprits are those who drone on endlessly about themselves without pausing to ask how you are doing. And as an introvert (INFP, to be precise), it’s enough to make me archive your WhatsApp convo, never to be seen again.
The friends you get drunk with every Friday because you happen to be around may not be the ones to call you up just to see how you are or check up on you if they know you’re going through hard times. Don’t be fooled by those who are always in your face. The older I get, the more I realise that the quality of friendships is far more important than the number of friends you have or what you can all relate to.
We may not all be at the same life stage. Still, my current fundamentals of friendship involve checking up on each other, encouraging, embracing changes, and being open-minded, supportive and loving. As long as you maintain those fundamentals, I’m happy.
In this technological age, it has never been easier, so don’t listen to those “I’ve been so busy” people after a year of no contact. You just weren’t a priority for them.
The biggest blessing to me in the past year has come in the form of getting to know people older than me — and making friendships as a result of discovering that we have way more in common than I could even imagine.
It has made me grow and receive advice from a different outlook on life. It has, however, resulted in a struggle to maintain some friendships with people my own age, as they seem so immature in comparison. But maybe that just means I’m a grandma who prefers sitting in a cafe sipping mint tea or drinking cocktails in a fancy bar to being in a sweatbox of a club.
I have become ruthless over the years— my time is limited, and I will not waste it on associates. I know exactly who my friends are; they love me, encourage me, push me to excel, tell me when I’m wrong or being lazy, will always check up on me, and I’ll move mountains for them to give them the same friendship that they have given me over time.
No matter what life stage we are at, I’ll ensure we never drift.
Unless they become a terrible friend. Because no one needs that type of energy in their life.
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