On Adult Friendships

By: Wendy Castellanos-Wolf

 adult friendshipsThis morning as I was perusing through the twitterverse, I encountered a quote that so aptly explains my pondering on adult friendships.

 “There comes a point in your life when you realize who really matters, who never did, and who always will.” ~ Oprah

 As a woman in her thirties, Oprah has once again provided me with an “Aha!” moment. Friendship is complicated. Last year I wrote a piece about the difficulties associated with making new friends in adulthood due to time constraints one has for social outings and the limited world we encounter as we maneuver through the routine of our adult lives.  Today, after an intense couple of weeks where the friendships that I have known for the past decade hung by a very thin thread, accompanied by the fortune of having encountered an Oprahism, the dynamics involved in friendship are a little bit clearer.

  1. Decide who matters and then work hard at maintain that relationship.
  2. Practice letting go because even though this person might matter to you, you might not matter to them.
  3. Friendships are not built in a day, they are the result of countless shared experiences, tests of trust and small gestures of love and appreciation.
  4. When friends cross the line into family it can be very confusing. One has to remember that even though the cliché says friends are the family you choose, they are still family. One cannot get rid of family very easily. It is healthier to learn to accept people for who they are or have become.
  5. I believe that each and every friend is in one’s life for a purpose. The friend that turns a tragedy into a comedy, the friend that will always tell you the truth even if it may hurt, the friend that can play dress up better than any fashion stylist, the friend that is able to listen and then provide reasonable advice. The list is endless.
  6. Adult friendship is not about how much face time is put into the relationship but rather having the certainty that that person is on your team.

I often remind myself that everyone has their own path in life. My friends and I are now women in our thirties going off into the world and staking our claim on life partners and careers so it is number 6 that keeps me grounded. It is number 4 that assures me that there are people out there who care about me. It is number 3 that unfortunately sometimes keeps me from making new friends and number 2 that has left me with plenty of questions. But it is this flux and flow, people who enter, touch and then define a moment; our friends, at least in our group, that keep life entertaining and give each of us so much to talk about…  

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