I don’t like people. Ok maybe not all people, but most. I am a spoiled, only child who hates sharing and would much rather spend time socializing alone than dealing with other people’s nonsense; but for some reason people like me and despite my dislike for most people, I have managed to form friendships. I have a tendency to not let people in, so when I make friends I cherish them because clearly they are special and have what it takes to put up with me and my madness. Most of my friends have been with me pretty much all my life, for example my best friend and I have known each other 20 years and after all this time I still haven’t managed to scare her off.

Lately my life has been pushing full steam ahead in a positive way. I’ve made new friends, joined new organizations, I’m seeing more of the world, started a new job and I’m just living a better and more productive life overall. My mind is focused on my future and how I can make the best out of life with the hand I was dealt, but some of my friends are not headed in the same direction. Some of my really good lifelong friends and even some of the newer ones are way off what I perceive as the logical adult path.

They still want to live at home because it’s free, baby daddy/momma drama, partying nonstop, sexing everything walking, shopping all the time for cute clothes, have no money in the bank and are behind on bills, but think all that is okay because they somehow managed to have money in a 401k they can’t touch until they’re 65. Really people? Really?!?! Of course none of this makes them bad people and it doesn’t take away from their valuable friendships, but I don’t live my life that way and that kind of foolishness is beyond ridiculous to me at this age. I have other friends that are more aligned with my present/future goals and dreams and these friends push me to be a better person and I truly love them for that, but they don’t hold my history or have my memories. They only know the present me, not all of me and since I can’t mesh them all into one amazing super friend, I’m left feeling like I’m stuck between different worlds.

I have crazy love for my hot mess friends, bad credit and all, some of them have known my “donkey years,” as my Trini friend Jennifer says, and I know they will always hold me down, but my newer friends are more in line with who I am and who I want to be. Granny always told me “Show me your friends and I’ll show you who you are,” but my hot mess friends are not me and with each passing day I feel myself being able to relate a little less. How do I grow and mature when the people closest to me are not, or at the very least aren’t growing and maturing at the same pace? How do I push forward without leaving them behind? I don’t want to be that person that “makes it” and forgets a part of who they are and for better or worse my friends are a part of who I am. I wasn’t always focused, wasn’t always living semi struggle free, so who am I to pull away from them simply because they aren’t where I am.

When we’re young we never think about this part of the future, the part where your world and journey has gotten so big that you have to shed some of your old life in order to move forward in the new one. I feel torn. I often try to find ways to mesh the two worlds together, but more often than not it ends up being uncomfortable and awkward. For now all I can do is spend time with my old friends and try to find new ways to relate to their lives as they are, but in the back of my mind I still wonder if it is truly possible to keep the same friends even though we’re all on different journeys.

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  • chris

    Wow this is definitely how I feel right now. My best friend that I met at one of my many retail store jobs just doesn’t seem so much like the person I met a few years ago. it seemed like back then we were so much alike, party every weekend, have the cutest boo’s and flat a** broke lol. But now that we are older I realize that that life is not at all what I’m interested in. Don’t get me wrong I aint out here balling out of control but I know how to manage my money a whole lot better and she…..is still lost in the credit card debt, shopping and buying everything she doesn’t need at an unreasonable price and wanting to party at every party no matter what the crowd (18+) we’re 24, and at the end of every two weeks is broke again. That pay check to pay check life is not me anymore and I feel like the more I move towards maturity and thinking more clearly the further away I move from my best friend. It’s just a terrible feeling.

  • Whatever

    As we get older we grow more intolerant. I have cut a few people out of my life in the past few years that were horrible but I was just too young and naive to see. As for friends that are in a different place in life, I’m ok with that. I’m not going to cut off a good friend from childhood because of their credit score or choice in men because that’s ridiculous. There is always room for growth in everyone including me so I’m not going to judge anyone for petty stuff like that. Try introducing your friends to some of the things that the new you enjoys doing. In our 20’s and early 30’s so much is happening so fast when it comes to goals, careers, relationships, interests etc. but when it slows down you will want the people truly dear to you that know you for you around you. Not the ones you picked up along the way because you appreciate their drive (even though that relationship can bloom and grow as well). Being a true friend means taking the good with the flaws.