As you journey through life, the truth is that your relationships with people are constantly going to change along the way. There is no avoiding this; change is simply inevitable.
However, change is not necessarily a bad thing. You might grow closer to some friends with time and distance but drift away from others with whom you thought you’d be “friends forever.” And the thing is…that’s okay.
Here are some common side effects of life in action.
1) You are not going to be friends with all of the same people for the rest of your life.
I’m sure everyone would love it if it were that easy- you make a few friends early on and they stand by your side forever and they are honest when you ask them how your new shirt looks and they pick you up when your car breaks down and tell you when there is something in your teeth and hold your hair when you get sick and you never have to worry about meeting new people because these friends are perfect.
Ah, if only it were that simple. If you’re lucky there will be a couple of people who stick around to the end, but don’t expect to stay BFFs with your entire high school clique or basketball team forever.
2) You are going to drift away from people.
Drifting apart in relationships really stinks, but it happens, and sometimes you just can’t help it. This is not a sign of defeat; it’s a sign of growing up.
Don’t give up on your friends, but also don’t let hanging onto relationships control your life. It’s okay to let go.
Sometimes what a relationship needs is a little space so later you and your friend can reconnect, jump into each other’s arms and admit how much you missed each other.
3) Despite all life changes, there are people who will stick around.
Maybe it’s your glue-eating classmate from kindergarten or that all-star teammate from your travel soccer team or that crazy guy from fifth period calculus…chances are, someone you’ve met a while ago is going to stay in your life one way or another.
This question is for you to answer yourself: Do you want these people in your life?
4) Social media has a major effect on relationships.
You’re going to scroll through your Facebook news feed and see people post photos and statuses. There are a few reactions you might have: I’m so happy for her! Who even is this person? Omg she is so annoying. Why does this person always complain? Wow I really miss him and I cannot wait to see him!
Social media can be used for good in relationships. You can communicate with people in far off lands, stay connected to current friends, reconnect with old pals, and organize reunions and events. Take positive advantage of this side of social media. But using social media can have a negative impact on your relationships, too. Don’t scroll through your news feed viewing posts of your friends getting drunk at parties if it annoys the harry out of you. Don’t compare yourself to that one friend who constantly posts photos of how much weight she’s been losing.
If you don’t want to be friends with someone on Facebook anymore because they annoy you or bring you down or you don’t talk to them anymore, delete them. It’s very easy and liberating. If you want to be friends again later, there’s an “Add Friend” button for that.
5) Long distance relationships are tough, but absolutely possible.
This goes for both friendly and romantic relationships. If you were meant to be friends with someone, it will happen. Don’t let distance be an excuse.
If you’re going to keep people in your life you’d might as well choose the people you want, regardless of location. If the people you choose don’t happen to be around you often, go to them. If you want it, make it work and it’ll be worth it in the end.
6) Your relationships don’t define you, but they do influence you.
If you’re hanging around with someone who is robbing a bank, that doesn’t make you a robber. But it does mean you are more likely to drive the getaway car than someone not hanging out with that person.
-T. L. L. D.