In other words, friendships can change a lot in this stage of life.
They may ebb and flow as everyone makes new friends, explores new friendships, and sometimes grows apart.
The growing apart may not be intentional; it’s often a matter of not having classes together or the same extra-curricular activities.
We typically become close with the people we see the most, and as teenagers evolve in their passions, personalities, and circumstances, their relationships evolve too.
This is a tricky thing to navigate for girls and their moms.
While I’ve been really proud of the friend choices my daughters have made – and I feel certain that many friends, including old friends from elementary school, will be friends for life – it’s hard to see an old friendship slip away and wonder what ever happened to that cute girl you used to see all the time. A girl who your daughter thought was a friend (in my I call them 50/50 friends) does something hurtful or mean.
The response is often something like, “Yeah, I love Isabella, I just never see her.” Nothing specific happened; it’s just that life is busy, and there isn’t enough time in the day to spend time with everyone you like. Or a group of girls may gang up on one girl because she made the leader mad.
So when you treat people well, you’ll attract friends who treat you well too.
By holding yourself to high standards, becoming the friend you wish to find, and choosing to be an encourager rather than a critic, you set yourself up for positive and long-lasting relationships.
This event reminded me of what can happen when you invite someone new to join you, and how many great opportunities we all let pass by when we’re hyper-focused on our friends. As multiple elementary schools merge, it’s a prime opportunity to make new friends and get to know different people who bring out different sides of you. While I liked our conversation, I kept waiting for it to go deeper. Five years later when we started dating, I teased him and told him that I assumed he was shallow that night because all he talked about was his fraternity brothers, going out, and having fun.
One regret I have from high school and college is not reaching out more beyond my circle and letting God open the door to unexpected blessings. Stay loyal to your old friends and know who you count on, but keep yourself open to making fun new connections. He laughed and replied, “Kari, I was an 18-year-old boy…I probably shallow!
” At age 18 we weren’t ready for each other, but five years later we were. The same thing can happen with friendships, so keep a good rapport with everyone, even if you think you have nothing in common. The biggest friendship killers are jealousy, comparison, insecurity, and fear – fear of rejection, fear of being left out, and fear of being alone.