The Complexity of Adult Friendships


Making Adult Friendships

I don’t understand why it can be so difficult to make friends in adulthood. To be honest, I assumed it would be easy to make friends for people who are roughly 35 years and younger. And after that age bracket, I thought making friends would become much harder.

But I was so WRONG!

It was so much easier to make friends when were kids. And now it seems nearly impossible when we became adults.

Friendships During Adulthood

Let me clarify. It seems nearly impossible to make  GOOD friends after high school or college. I could be wrong, but from my point of view, somewhere between the ages of 18-22, most people stop trying to make good friends or ensure a deep friendship.

It seems like everyone is just looking for a good time. OR! People don’t give 100% into their friendships and someone ends up working so much harder than the other.

Which is so crazy to me because when we enter adulthood, we each have a better understanding of who were as well as our interests without yet becoming rigid in our ways so that we’re no longer open-minded to new ideas and experiences.

As we became young adults, I thought more people would be ready to meet new people and learn about different cultures and view points. On the contrary, many young adults cling so tightly to the friends they grew up with that they don’t open themselves up to new people.

Why aren’t we giving the same energy to our platonic relationships as we do our romantic ones?



Friendships During Childhood

On another note, when we were younger, friendships were either based on proximity(school or neighborhood) or who you knew (mom’s best friends child). And even with that, your best friend that year may have been someone who happened to be same age as you, you wore the same backpack the 1st day of school, or your favorite colors were the same.

In other words, there was no real depth to the friendship. We only made friends with people when it was convenient.

If you were lucky as a child, your childhood friends remained your friends into adulthood. Along the way, you both grew and matured together and your relationship became a deeper one.

But then a weird shift happens during adolescence. Friendships become based on status and popularity. As shallow as these friendships tend to be, but here we now see ourselves thinking critically about who to becomes friends with.

As adolescents merge into a young adult, they are now into somewhat of a rebellious phase. Almost no one is off limits when it comes to friends.

Between then (young adult) and now (adulthood), when did we stop being so open? And why?

Now that we’re older, we can actually create deeper connections with one another by way of culture, activities, or similar was in music, movies or books. As a result of having common interests, two individuals can create a long-lasting friendship that is able to withstands the trails ad tribulations within the relationship.

How Do We Benefit from This?

Are we afraid of something? Maybe some past friendships or relationships scar our mind or hearts and now those past memories are preventing us from opening up to one another.

Because if I do witness adult friendships, they tend to be extremely superficial and shallow. Yet they consider each other friends even though they treat one another as an acquaintance to hang out with on the weekends.

I believe that our lives can become richer when we allow ourselves to open up no new friendships or create a deeper connections with the individuals we already have in our lives.

Here is this adult person who believes you are this interesting-ass person but you already have it in your mind that you don’t need anyone else in your life?

I don’t understand who you could know that without getting to know the person.

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112 thoughts on “The Complexity of Adult Friendships

  1. I will be the first to say, NO NEW FRIENDS! I’ve never really been the “friend” having type of person. I’m not sure why, but I just felt better staying to myself. Recently, I’ve opened my “friend” bubble up and will be the first to say it failed about 30%. I’ve never had so much DRAMA in my life. SMH! I’m so happy I have the gift of goodbye! I have zero qualms about saying goodbye to those that bring DRAMA into my life.

  2. That’s why I love MeetUp. Most the friends I met as an adult I’ve met through MeetUp or my sorority. People can be really clickish and keep to themselves in Atlanta, but MeetUp brings together the people who aren’t like that. Love it!

  3. Great insight! I think it’s easier to make friends when you were younger is because you’re stuck with the kids in your class for 12 years lol. For me, I’m 19 now and I find that it’s more important to focus on myself, jobs and my hobbies. That’s why I have few friends now than when I was in high school. Friendships are hard to keep as we tend to fall out slowly from focusing on our personal lives.

  4. I’m curious as to what made you think that making friendships as you get older would be harder? I’ve found it easier and easier, probably because I know more about who I like and I stay away from the people that I don’t like haha

  5. Its so hard because as an adult we have so many responsibilities to take care of. That makes it hard to put effort in to our friendships. Maybe its just as important to “date” your friends meaning you set aside time for them just like you do your spouse.

  6. I’ve always been such an awko taco and it hasn’t gotten any easier with age. Meeting new people is always an anxiety situation to me. My best friend is still my same best friend sicne grade 3. i’m on the no new friends team lol

  7. Great post. I can honestly say I haven’t made a proper friend since I was eleven years old, I’m forty six now.

  8. Finding a good friend in adulthood is so hard! Maybe because after gaining so much life experience, we are afraid to invest time in a new relationship!

  9. hahhaa! This is such an interesting point about adulthood. I will agree we can’t be friends especially after the age of 25. The mind starts to think more logical and less emotional while interacting with a new person.

  10. I’ve thought about this a lot too. I think after a certain age, many people get set in their ways and stick to their cliques. When I moved to LA for work, it was hard to make friends outside of work. In NY, after the kids grew up, many parents who were my friends moved away and the ones who stuck around were sticking with their cliques. I recently made a new friend and girl, it’s great.
    Yep, I’m with you on this subject especially being that I’m an immigrant whose family members are NOT in this great country.

  11. It is so much easier to make friends when you are younger. Kids make friends so quickly because they aren’t judgmental. Maintaining friendships as adults is so much more complicated, especially as our lives tend to shift directions.

  12. It is hard to make a good friend as an ADULT and LIVING OVERSEAS. I have a lot of great friends made here in Japan but a lot of my friends have left to go to different countries and go back home.

  13. It’s quite a challenge now to have real adult friendships unlike when we were kids. Time, relationship and even money is an issue.

  14. I agree with you that friend that we make as adults may be different from our childhood friends, We just need to be understanding and more forgiving in our adult friendships as well.

  15. Making friends has gotten harder as I get older. Friends from years ago drop off, but a busy schedule makes it harder as I get older. THere are certainly benefits to having a good friendship with substance.

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