We all see it in the movies, the girl gangs or ‘squad goals’. Its as if we are all supposed to form some kind of wolf pack and take on the world together. The sleepovers, group chats, parties and girl trips.
The only time I remember having that kind of friendship was when I was at college studying dance (after a year I decided to be one of those college dropouts because I realised that this just wasn’t the life for me) so cliche, right? I grew a close bond with a few of the girls in my class and as time went on we found ourselves spending every lunchtime together, group chats formed, and party invitations flew in. (I know I sound cringe right now) but that’s what it was like, back then anyway. Once I left, conversations faded, and I never heard from those who I thought I would be in contact with forever.
If you wanna really throw it back and talk about school. It was the same back then too. I spent a lot of my time feeling like an outsider. I lacked in confidence so much back then which I think has something to do with being bullied throughout my first two years. I found it hard to bounce back after that. I mean what was I suppose to do after having someone influence others to not like you (But I’ll save that for another blog I think) I wouldn’t get invited to all of the cool party’s and there was no way in hell I would have been excepted into the ‘popular’ group or whatever you want to call them.
It can feel lonely…
I have felt lonely over the years. And it sucks. It’s hard telling yourself you’re good enough when you’re bombarded with Ibiza pics and continuous party selfies when scrolling through Instagram. All I could think is why am I not a part of this? Am I not likeable enough? I wanted to know what it felt like to struggle choosing who to invite over on a Friday night for a Chinese or the battle of picking my bridesmaids. I would beat myself up about it so much that I even began to not like myself. I wouldn’t stop comparing myself to others and would always question if I was the problem, and why I wasn’t capable of having lots of friends. Everybody else did, so why not me? I started to crave having my own tribe.
When I look back, my friends for life were there all along…
I look back now and think why on earth were you doing that? Was it worth it? And no, I don’t think it was. I drained myself and my mental health was a shambles.
As I’ve grown older I have realised that I am so lucky to have a handful of separate girlfriends who are my sisters. They’re the kind of friends I can run to with any problems without judgement, they’re the ones I can ring up in the middle of the night when I’m having a mid-life crisis (standard) or laugh so hard with until our belly’s hurt, and they’re the ones I can go on adventures around the world with. That’s what friendship is all about, isn’t it? That’s how I know that it doesn’t matter if I’m not part of a girl gang. I have friends for life. My own tribe.
There are also other kinds of friendships. Family. Just because they are a relative doesn’t mean they aren’t capable of being a friend too. I look at my mum and nan as my best friends and live for a girly sleepover with my cousin whilst we stuff our faces with popcorn and cheese sticks.
Never the less there are a bunch of different ways to meet new people whether that’s starting a new hobby, socially, and even through social media which I’m pretty open too.
After 21 years I have learned that I don’t need to seek or force friendships. Just carry on doing you and you never know who you’re going to meet along the way.
So, whether you have 1 friend or 20. That doesn’t really matter. What matters is that you surround yourself with people who bring out the best in you and make you happy.