To The Girl Who Struggles Making Friends

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Skirt: Thrifted  |  Shirt: Thrifted  |  Shoes: Keds (Poshmark)  |  Purse: Thrifted (Fossil)  |  Earrings: Target (old) 

If you read the title and though “that describes me”, I’m here to tell you that YOU ARE NOT ALONE!

You might feel as though you are alone in this season, but you are not alone in the struggle. 

I’ve always considered myself to be one of those people who can count her close friends on ONE HAND...or maybe a few fingers (if I’m lucky, maybe in some seasons of life, two hands). However, I’m not one of those lucky people who has the same friends for their entire life. Sure, there are still a couple friends I had when I was a younger that I still stay in contact with, but my life has very much been one that encompassed the “friends for a reason & friends for a season” saying.

When I say “friends” I don’t just mean the people whose numbers are in my phone, the people who follow me on social media, or the ones I know will say hello to me when I see them in person and maybe start a conversation...it’s more than just the surface level, I know you, you know me, beyond the trivial.....friendship to me goes beyond that and is deeper.

I count more people as “acquaintances” than I do as friends, and if your someone who knows me and your reading this, please don’t be offended. I think in a world of social media and extroverts we’ve come to redefine friendship as the number of people who follow us, or who are in our phone contacts, or who we see frequently...but sometimes true friendship comes from those you don’t see frequently, but those who are their when you need them and check in on your life.

I've always been someone who struggled to make friends. When I was younger I used to think that there was just something wrong with me...that was before I knew I was an Introvert and that my difficulty with conversation and fear of meeting new people was just part of who I am. However, even though I now understand myself more and know my strengths and weaknesses when it comes to conversation and human interaction the whole "friendship" aspect of my life is still a struggle. 

I mean, gosh darn it....I will be 25 in November and I still haven't figured this thing out!  

As an introvert though, I crave and value deep and meaningful relationships that are created through connection. I want someone who will be there to listen to my deep thoughts or crazy ideas or ask how I’m doing, over wanting to just go out. Friendship in my mind is more a dance of slow intentionality rather than spontaneous events. 

I struggle making friends because I’m an introvert...and I am not using that as an excuse (because trust me, I have stretched myself a LOT this last year), but being an Introvert influences so much of my social life because I’m not naturally outgoing and it takes awhile for people to see the real me (not to mention it takes awhile for me to open up). However, I also struggle making friends because not many people take the time to get to know someone, beyond a first (or second, or third) impression...we live in a day and age where we want instant results and we think that scrolling through their Instagram feed or watching their stories gives us all the information we need...but true connection comes through authentic effort!

In all honestly, in this season of my life right now, I feel as though I have more acquaintances than real deep friendships, and while that can be frustrating at times, I am really okay with that. I am a very independent person, so unlike my Extroverted counterparts, I can easily live a happy life in my own world...however, that doesn't mean that I don't long for people who fill my life up as much as I would hope to fill theirs. 

This last year I have really put myself out there to meet new people. Was it scary? YES!!! Do I still get freaked out being around them even after 8 months? YES!!! Have I met some great people? YES!! Do I still struggle with conversations around them? YES!! However, life is about doing the things that scare you and challenging yourself to grow! I am on a journey of learning to make friends, because making friends as an adult is HARD!!! It was so much easier in high school when friendship just naturally blossomed because your paths crossed over with people who did similar things as you. 

In this season of life, I have learned that I sometimes have to reach out to others, whether it is people I have known for awhile or new people I meet. I often reach out because I know what it's like not to have someone reach out, and I never want others to feel that way. However, one downside to my Introverted INFJ personality is that I have a habit of easily walking away from friendships that are one sided...some call it the "silent door slam". And while that sounds so harsh, sometimes as people we need to make hard choices that are best for us mentally and emotionally, and that's okay. It's okay to "unfriend" people in real life or to take a step back to assess the situation. It's okay to walk away when your lives go different ways. 

So to the girl who struggles making friends, know you are not along! Know it's okay to let go of those relationships that have frayed over the years. Know it's okay to be your own friend for a season. However, never discredit the growth that comes when you challenge yourself to get outside of your comfort zone and do the thing that TERRIFIES you...meeting & talking to new people! 

Do you find yourself in a season like mine?

How have you challenged yourself to make friends?

- Madison

3 comments

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  2. I really appreciate you writing this- I have felt this way for so long as well (as a fellow introvert). Thanks for sharing!

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    1. It's been heavy on my heart recently...so glad you could relate :)

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