Posted by: mydarkestplaces | March 2, 2010


Remember the movie 13 Going on 30? All Jenna wanted to be is “Thirty and flirty and fun.” And truthfully? Who didn’t dream of that as a child? I certainly did.

As a beleaguered adolescent, being an adult and “able to do whatever I want” was my answer to everything. I was going to be able to stay up past nine, buy that CD with the parental warning on it, and play video games – whenever I wanted.

Turns out, fifteen years later, I was wrong. Being an adult isn’t just about freedom. There are just as many responsibilities that go along with that freedom. I’ve got the bills, the job, the car, the pets, but perhaps the thing that stresses me out the most (the MOST), are the relationships.

When in school (from elementary through college) maintaining friendships is relatively easy. You see people in class, in the lunch room, around the dorms. Some effort is required, but when it comes down to it, you are constantly surrounded by peers and friends.

In adulthood (from here on out referred to as “the real world”), you don’t see your friends and/or family every day. Chances are good, you spend more time with your coworkers than your friends. Chances are equally good when you get home the most strenuous task you can handle is playing Farmville or Mario Kart Wii. This makes it tough to maintain the intense friendships created while in school.

This has been an issue for me on many fronts. First off, over the past four years I have become incredibly close friends with people who have their lives together. This is not to say that friends from Before are making poor choices (although, indubitably, some are). It is more to say that as my life stabilizes, as I form concrete, healthy relationships, I am less able to deal with the precariousness of others’ lives.

Lately I’ve been trying to decide the degree to which it makes me a bad person or not.

Part of me says, “It’s fine. You’re doing what you have to do for you.” But the other part of me, the highly empathetic/bleeding heart part, asks how I can abandon my friends in their greatest time of need.

I don’t expect any resolution to come from this, but I figured it was high time I said the words “out loud.”


  1. I still hold to the idea that we get a bunch of people together and take over an entire apartment complex. How amazing would it be to live with/near/around all your friends again?

    I have the same struggle with friends who are “together” versus friends who are not. Sometimes, even though it’s difficult to be able to let go, you just have to be selfish and move on with your life. By letting go you can grow separately and perhaps some day down the line cross paths again as new people and re-forge a (better) friendship.

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