Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Friendships: Past vs. Present

So, I stumbled upon my old blog that I kept all throughout university.  I'm currently in the middle of reading the entire 3 year collection and all I can say is it's hilarious!!!!  First, because it's purely a diary.  Like "today so-and-so did this to me" and "I'm so mad I can barely see!"  While it's not all that much different from this blog, it's way more personal, and dare I say, risqué?  I go into a LOT of personal detail that I would NEVER share here.  Does that mean I've become more censored as a person or just that my audience is different?  

Haha, one thing that's kinda flipping my mind is that it appears that I used to have a very easy time talking to my friends and telling them EXACTLY how I felt about them.  I wasn't afraid to show my rage, my frustration, my sadness, or the pure elation I had from being friends with them.  I felt totally entitled to speak my mind.  

It got me wondering if friendships like that are still possible, in our adult lives?  I have met some incredible people living in Brazil (especially incredible because they are multiple nationalities who share a common experience - wild!).  I would even say I have some very good friends here.  But are friendships nowadays the friendships of our past?  Is that even possible?  I don't know if I would feel comfortable laying it all out on the table for my friend, because I wouldn't want to risk too much conflict or fighting.

Maybe it's the nature of friendships here... they all feel temporary.  At least because we know that one day someone will leave.  Or maybe it's because we are all just guests in this country, and don't have the same roots and histories of our home countries.  Maybe now, as adults, we have the capacity to see what the future 'means', and that things don't last forever as we once thought in our naive adolescences. 

Or maybe it's even simpler than that, and this is just growing up.  We develop nuclear families that satisfy our need for close, intimate relationships and our friendships become like the Clinique Bonus Gift (gotta say though - I always LOVE that bonus gift!).

Anyway, just curious to know how anyone else would evaluate friendships in the past vs friendships today.  Do you think you've become less 'intimate' with your friends?  How do you maintain intimacy if you have it??  So curious about this.... 


  1. When you talk about 'knowing you will leave' I'm reminded of the more shallow friendships I had my stint living abroad and traveling from 1998-2000.

    I think I'm here to stay in Brazil, so my investment- and willingness to be real- is much more authentic.

    Your post also brings to mind that EVERYTHING is temporary. The sand is constantly shifting beneath our feet.

    1. I hear you Jen - I am staying her for an indefinite amount of time, so I at least want to invest in my friendships, for sure.

      Maybe that realization of everything is temporary is more appropriate for the stage of life we're in. Not that I am a temporary friend... do you find relationships with friends more or less intimate than in your past?

  2. I think it more has to do with the nuclear part of your life being your spouse/family now than the place you live, although the latter can definitely play a part in it for sure. I live in the same state I grew up in, and my friendships are just different if they are being established now. However, with my girlfriends from college we just GET each other, so I could say more/risk more with them. As for being in a different country, some of my very very best friends come from living abroad, but those also happened when I was younger and they were my roommates rather than casual get-together buddies. Being married I think has brought the biggest change as far as this goes for me.

    1. Hey Tiffany!
      I can totally say the same thing about feeling more attached to your college girls. You make a good point, it's not necessarily the place you live but maybe the stage of life (ie. being married).

      Thanks for your comment!

  3. I think the whole friends are for a reason, season or life time is true and this depends on how intimate you are with them.

    For example, I was friends with some people in Korea for a reason - they spoke English! I wouldn't have normally been friends with them at home, but it was better than sitting in my studio alone!

    I also think you find out who your true friends are when you live abroad. You find out who are the ones that stay in contact, send you birthday cards to far ends of the world. Those are the life time ones who I am truly intimate with. Some I have known since I was 3, some since last year!

    I have found that sometimes I don't want to make any new really good friends as I know it will be temporary and it will just be upsetting when I/they leave and we don't know when we will see each other again.

    All I can say it thank goodness for technology, skype and facebook which allows me to keep up with my true friends really easily!!

  4. I think sleepovers are key- spilling your guts, doing your nails, giggling and telling stories all night...aaaand we should have one :)

  5. I worry sometimes about the friends I am making here because at some point I will leave and I wonder if we will even keep in touch? Before every place I lived I wasnt married and I think therefor the friendships were different. Here I do a lot more as couples rather than girls going out together and I realllllly miss that. So when I moved before we had that girl bond that kept going no matter where we lived and still carries on today. Where as here, well they have their husbands so when I leave or they leave that bond never really ran its course if that makes sense. So in that way the friendships are different. Plus since all the husbands know each other too, I'm hesitant to really spill something knowing there is a good possibility they wil tell their husbands and a week later the four of us could end up at dinner and those things that girls share feel so much more public and aired rather than girls secrets.

  6. Hey Carrie Brads.. oops! Lindseeey!!
    Can't you see you already's given the answer for the two questions you left on the end of the post? Not literaly, but the way you design your ideas, somehow, you made me understand that you see yourself as (a litte bit) more mature now. And, yes, it includes being less intimate with your friends. If the person behaves like an adultescent we can clearly tell there's something wrong.

  7. I'm gonna have to disagree with the other commenters here. I don't know exactly what you were telling your friends, but I don't think the change in how you talk to your friends is because you're married or because you're in another country. I think the change comes because, as we get older, we realize that other people's choices (i.e., mistakes!) often don't have anything to do with us, and we also learn that people don't change or do what you think they should do just because you tell them to. So our friends still do things that we disagree with, but we learn to keep our thoughts to ourselves. I don't think that means our friendships are necessarily less intimate (though it can be the result, if we only say what we think people want to hear, even when they ask for advice), but I think that this discretion (sp?) means that friendships are more respectful and more adult. Thoughts?


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...