18 Mar The changing face of friendships
Lots of times you can be hanging out with someone for months and they have really great qualities and then for some unknown reason, you start hanging out less and less and you are hanging out more and more with someone else. What does that mean???
It means you are a human being that is growing and changing and evolving into who you choose to be. It means you are a teen. And just because your friendships change, that doesn’t mean that you are a horrible person or even that your old friend is now a horrible person. It simply means you are discovering different aspects of yourself and you are trying different things out.
So, as much as you LOVE hanging out with Fiona this month, you might decide next month that her style, attitude, character, or any number of attributes, simply do not resonate with who you are right now. Fiona has helped you realize the person you choose to be but you don’t owe her close friendship for life. You can appreciate the time you had together and then explore other friendships.
You can kind of think of it like that sweater you wore every other day last year. You LOVED it then, it felt like the right thing to wear almost everyday. But now when you go into your closet, you just don’t feel like wearing it anymore. Other things suit you better, and so you wear them. Your taste has changed in clothes, just like your taste in friends will change. That’s okay. That’s life.
So, you’ve just learned a bit more about yourself via the friendship you had with Fiona. Who’s up next? Charlie. What will Charlie teach you about yourself? In fact, what will all your friends teach you about yourself?
Also, the people you choose to hang out with tell the world about who you are. The truth of the matter is – whether we like it or not – we all judge people at certain points by the company they keep. If you are hanging out with people who are considered the party-animals but you just love being with them, then you might be labeled a party-animal as well. Are you? Are you okay if you are not a party animal but others will think of you that way? Some people will be comfortable with that, others won’t. How does it make you feel?
Being (more than) okay with who you are and the friendship choices you make is the goal of the teen years. It may take a few years to get the hang of it – before you settle in to the group that feels right for you. That’s part of life: growing and changing and discovering what works for you.
Eventually you will figure out who you are and that includes learning about the things that you hold dear in yourself and in your friends. That is the subject of the next post.
Has your social group changed since elementary school? How so?