I’ve listened with longing as other women talk about their best friend that they’ve known since they were three. As a military brat (who’s also terrible at remembering names) I have very few recollections of any one particular friend before the second grade. We moved every two to four years while I was growing up. And with every move, I would try to hold onto the old friends, but inevitably geography became an obstacle that we couldn’t overcome.
With the connectivity available through social media today, I’ve managed to reconnect with some old friends going back as far as elementary school. But so much life has happened that we just click “like” on the sweet pictures and funny anecdotes and that’s the extent of the relationship.
I’ll never regret my growing up years, though. Although making new friends was difficult being the socially awkward person that I was, I always managed to find a little tribe to call my own. I never sat at the cool kid table, but I’m okay with that as I think it saved me from a ton of trouble in the long run.
Once I made it through my school years and got married, I thought finding a forever girlfriend … a “bosom friend” as Anne-girl called it, would be a given. Only it wasn’t. I fell out of touch with my college girlfriends and had a string of failed friendships throughout my 20’s.
I thought it was me. That I didn’t know how to be a friend. And I was halfway right. But I also know now, that I was only ever half of the relationship. I’ve learned so much about being a friend over the last decade. It all began with finally tearing down a wall that looked more like a ruler. It meant I no longer tried to be what somebody else needed me to be.
7 Ways I’ve learned to be a friend:
- Be you
- Forgive the stupid stuff
- Always be willing to help (or receive help)
- Be willing to disagree
- Make time for each other
- Keep each other’s secrets
- Be willing to let go
That’s the simplified version. Because everybody likes a list right? You can read the entire post at Middle Places:Our best girlfriend can be a lifeline. But finding and keeping those relationships can be hard.Click To Tweet