In my eyes, there are two types of people in the world:
- Those that like to be played & led on by others.
- Those that want the truth, straight, no chaser.
I, myself, belong to that latter group, particularly when it pertains to my personal relationships, i.e. my “friends,” because if we’re falling off, I want to know.
When I think back just a few years ago, when I was a wide-eyed college student, I thought for sure that the friends I made my freshman year would remain in my life through some of our most pivotal moments: watching each other say our vows and bearing our first child. But even after growing with these people, experiencing heartbreak and success together, and having unlimited access to to one another for 4 years, graduation hits and all that changes.
That friend that was once just a dorm away is now states away, and when you could at one point text your homegirl to meet up at the dining hall for lunch, catching up for a quick call has now become a game of cat and mouse, chasing each other down for when your “schedules align.”
Maintaining friendships outside of college is particularly difficult because it’s now easier for people to hide behind their “cluttered schedules,” avoid your calls, and play “busy.” But at 23, 24, 25 years old, who has time for games? In these cases, I like to refer to the wise words of my girl, Fantasia:
If you’re feeling like your college relationships are slipping through the cracks, it may be due to one or all of the following:
1.) The “The phone works both ways” excuse: I’m sure you’ve heard this saying before, and although it has a lot of truth to it, it’s usually applied when a certain someone is feeling a bit of guilt about not making the time to “get up” with you. Yes, the phone does work both ways, but you need one person to call and the other to pick up! If you’ve made the effort and they’re always “at the gym” or caught “at a bad time,” then honey, you need to remember one thing: people make time for what’s important to them. And maybe, just maybe, this particular relationship you have with them just isn’t a priority anymore. You’re a big girl, don’t chase; you’ve done all you could do. 2.) You either outgrew each other or grew apart: We all have the right to grow and should want to. In no way are we required to remain the same person we were 4 years ago, a week ago, or even 2 minutes ago. However, the issue arises when we get attached to the person our friend used to be and don’t allow room for this growth to take place. After graduation, life happens to people in a number of ways: they’re out of work and get depressed, they join the miliary, get married, become parents, or lose a loved one, and it’s selfish to think that people could remain the same Joe from back in the day after these situations occur. In that same breath, it’s okay if the friendship you once held dear dissolves if that person is no longer serving a purpose in your life. The same way they have the right to grow, as you do. Give yourself that space, and let go of relationships that are no longer producing fruit.3.) There are other fish in the sea: Are you holding on to this said relationship strictly off of familiarity? Just because Susie “gets you?” Because Bob is “all you know?” Well, I hate to break it to you, but while you’re waiting around for them to return your FT call, they’re off at grad school developing new companionships. Don’t let yourself be left in the dust. Get off the hamster wheel, go out there, and start making some new friends of your own.
Before you go: let me know in the comments below your experience with maintaining friendship in your adult life, post-grad. Have you had to cut anyone off? Are your friendships still going strong? I want to know!
Peace, peace, peace,