Friendships (or lack thereof) in Your 20s and 30s

With my 26th birthday only a month away, I've spent the last few weeks reflecting on my life to date. I am blessed to have a wonderful husband, two adorable dogs, a supportive extended family, and a promising career yet am amazed at how fast the last 5 years of my post-collegiate life have gone. It's true what everyone says - time flies when you're busy doing something else. Since graduating Arizona State in 2005, I have lived in three states and made some new friends and lost a few along the way. After a brief bout of slight loneliness, I’ve asked myself a simple question: Why is it so difficult to maintain and develop friendships in your late 20's??

On a quest to find an answer to my nagging question, I went to the website every self respecting research guru does. Thanks to Google, I found the book: "The Friendship Crisis: Finding, Making, and Keeping Friends When You're Not a Kid Anymore" and was instantly intrigued. Through profiles of various women, Marla Paul explores the challenges women face as they attempt to manage marriages, careers, moving and families in their late 20's, early 30's and beyond. The phenomenon of just how difficult it can be on women to see long lasting friendships dissipate is not only something I am interested in, but something I can relate to. As a twenty-something, I am always the youngest person in my office by at least 20 years. As a result of moving three times in five years, I make friends and then ultimately leave them. Text messages, emailing and the occasional phone conversations can only go so far.

Paul’s book explores the ways women can get out and forge new friendships as we get older. Overall I think this is a great read - it will make you question "How Am I As a Friend?" and will no doubt make you re-evaluate existing friendships and challenge yourself to get out there and develop new relationships.

For those readers who find themselves in a similar situation – how have you handled getting older and finding yourself missing those fulfilling friendships?

1 comment:

  1. As an expat, I have had to learn to be more flexible when it comes to friendship. That is, when I find someone I really click with I stick with them even if and when they (or I) move away.

    I have also learned that friendship doesn't just happen, when you are an adult. You need to put some effort in it. If you find someone who is promising, you need to make an effort to spend time together, sometimes alone and sometimes with significant others or other friends. You need to indulge in each other's passions, or at least try them on for size.

    It sounds like a lot of work, but really it's just a little effort, and it quickly becomes part of the routine and it's a LOT of fun!