Friday, August 13, 2010

Blues for adult friendships

Each year we know
more people than we've ever known
and yet our parties grow

It used to be
just both being under ten and knowing
who the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were
was enough to unite us
in the big bad boring adult world
of line-ups and office parties.
Just swimming in that ocean
made you take note of others your size
and move with them
like a school.

As an adult, it's hard to keep friends
who don't share your little fishbowl.

Maybe it's just me
throwing up my cake so I can eat it again.
Do I really want more childhood best friends,
or do I want friends like my stuffed toys
who stopped talking with the game ended,
their mouths full of stuffing
waiting for me to speak their words?
Do I want a friend like my sweet old dog
who loved me but knew his place,
never followed me to school?

I'm a dirty mutt
who barks to come back into your heart
then whines to be let out again.

Photo by Jon Hanson

        Why do you think it's harder to make and keep friends as an adult than it was as a child? Is it because we're so much busier? Because adult friendships are more complex? Because children have more in common than adults do?


Mary said...

All of your points make sense as to why the number's smaller. I do think it comes down to busy-ness and the amount of different pockets of friends we have. Some will be closer than others, meaning it's harder to coordinate a night out with circles outside of your immediate one.

I heard on the radio the other day actually that we only need about 5 friends give or take to be happy. Cuz really, how many close connections can you possibly handle before there's no time left in the day?

claudia said...

I think it's because we no longer go to school together.

But I think it's amazing that you can find different ways to be friends with people without seeing them on a regular basis, and still feel as though you are closer than ever.

Dorkmaster Flek said...

I think being busier in general and physical space apart are bigger obstacles than people realize.

kate said...

Our worlds are so much larger now,
than when we were young.

We no longer stay in the small familiar areas with the same familiar friends.

We no longer go to church and ballet lessons and interact with the same people.

We now run alone on the streets and bicycle through abandoned alleyways.

Our gyms no longer have classes with the same familiar faces.

In the past, I could instantly make friends by bringing fruit by the foot wherever I went.

Now we're living alone, eating alone, sleeping relatively alone.

Sometimes I'll see the same person twice on the subway, but I'll never say hi. Adults don't say hi to strangers.

A part of me longs for the past, yet the rational side of me loves change and growth.

Independence. Freedom. Loneliness.

Perhaps not having the same friends is a good thing. Perhaps this allows us to grow and step outside our comfort zones.

I think for me, my live-in boyfriend takes the place of so many friends. Although he is so much a part of me that it leaves me feeling alone all the same.

We buy fancy wine glasses, in hopes of fancy girls night in parties. I imagine imported cheese and crackers and friends that are so well suited for me that I create them in my head.

I buy high heels in hopes of going out and wearing them.

The reality being that we no longer go out as much anymore. We are no longer looking for that person to meet and spend the rest of our lives with.

It's strange that having 450 friends on facebook means nothing. Everyone I would want to meet up with lives in another city and we're all so busy.

And then the "friends" I meet and hang out with from work and adult life are, relatively boring. I'd rather be alone than spend a day with them.

Bex said...

i LOVE your blog. I believe it to be because with adulthood comes the realisation of how short life is, and how precious time is, along with the lessons of when you feel you may have wasted time on unhappiness. Aswell as obviously having less free time. So you manage the time you do have with more thought and consciously prioritise the people you see.