- Education and Science
High School Friends
Longevity of Early Years Friendships
Do you ever wonder why your high school friendships last for a life-time? I wonder if this is true for most people. Some people are blessed with some great friendships that started even before high school and these friends continue to be close to the point of being considered as family. People who became friends later in life, for example at college do not seem to sustain the longevity as high school friendships, at least in my opinion.
That brings me to my high school friendships, which have survived over the last thirty years. I believe our longevity is due in part to when our friendship started. We began our friendship during adolscence. Erickson describes it as Identity vs role confusion. During this stage our friendship was more important than our families. Our world revolved around our friends. We identified with each other and so our friendship was very intensive. We were excited, happy and free. We shared almost everything, such as detalis about meeting our first boyfriend, first kiss, first love letter, first date. We were experiencing all these firsts together and that created a bond with us.
Let me tell you a little more about three of my best friends and you'll see what I mean about identity and bonding. We called ourselves the DynamicSes because our first names begin with the letter S. I knew one of these friends since we were in grade three and the other two friends I met in grade nine. We were always seen together at school and during the last three years of high school, we were inseparable.
Our family background was similar; we were from christian families. We all participated in church because our parents were very involved in church. We did not all attended the same church as we lived in different communities. Our church activities were not the primary focus of our friendship, as a matter of fact, we seldom spoke about church. We were more interested in normal things that girls our age were curious about. We talked about boys, who was cute, who was smart and who we'd marry. We also spoke about our ambitions in life and what we'd like to do when we were older. We thougth twenty five years was old - by that age we would have a great career and married with children. Needless to say, we did not achieve that goal. Our careers look priority for a while.
As I am writing this article, I realize that we had a lot in common and that may be the reason why we have remained friends. Currently we live in different parts of the world, two of us live in Canada, one live in the USA and another live in the Caribbean. All of us have successful careers; one does marketing for a major communication company; another is a manager of a major health club chain, another is an owner of a company that manufactures and distributes lingerie and sports wear internationally and another was a teacher for a while then switched to community healhcare management. Our values remain primarily the same; hard work and respect of self and others, while putting God first.
Our families are very important to us; three of us are married, (way later than the 25 years old projection) with children and one person is in a long term relationship. We communicate with each other at different times, for instance, I communicate with two of my best friends mostly on their birthday and holidays. The friend that I met in grade three, is closest and we speak at least once per week. We are supporting to each other during major life events such as weddings, birth of children, graduation or promotions and recognitions. Our children call each other "aunty".
I am not sure if this proves that friendships formed in early years survive longer that ones formed later in life, but for these three best friends and I, it appears to be the case. I have formed many friendships over the years, but these three best friends will remain my BFF.
I'll end with a poem about Best Friend by Anon.
For My Best Friend
This is for you, my best friend,
the one person i can tell my soul too
Who can relate to me like no other
Who I can laugh with to no extents,
Who I can cry too when times are tough,
Who can help me with the problems of my life.
Never have you turned your back on me
Or told me I wasn't good enough
Or let me down
I don't think you know what that means to me
You have went through so much pain and you still have time
And I love you for listening even when inside YOU are dying
And I look up too you because you are strong,
Even though you don't think you are.
And I hope you know that I am always here
To listen to you laugh and cry and help
In all the ways that i can
And I will try to be at least half the friend you are
I hope you know I would not be the person I am today, with out you.
My best friend.
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