High school friendships can change and that’s okay

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By Ashley Groze

It seems when I was in high school I never did find my place. Of course I had tons of “friends” whom I would see on campus or at games that I would say hey to. But the group of friends that I mainly kicked it with during break and lunch were friends that I’ve known since grade school. We will always have a bond, but the bond is there because of the years we’ve spent together. I have friends that I’ve met in college that I feel like I’ve known my whole life.

Over break, I reflected whom I still remain close to and whom I’ve drifted from. It seems that many people don’t find their place until after high school. There are many different places the high school friends veer toward:

  • The One Who Ghosted but Instantly Reconnects in Person
  • The One Who’s Always There for You
  • The One You Didn’t Want to Bump into but You Have an Unfortunately Small Hometown
  • The One Who Drastically Changed
  • The One Who Still Thinks We’re in High School
  • The One Who Peaked in High School
  • The One Who Went to Harvard
  • The One Who’s Now a Stoner
  • The One that Has Two Kids
  • The One Who’s Already Landed Five Internships
  • The One You Realize Was Never Actually Your Friend

There are friends that remain in touch through social media, but the relationship never extends past a like or a share. The main point is, reconnecting with high school friends is usually bittersweet because either you change, they change or you both do.

Sometimes this change is good. Sometimes you both matured and you share stories for inspiration. In other situations, this change creates tension and pushes you apart. The friendship slowly drifts because you just don’t talk as much and you’re not in each other’s lives anymore.

Although we had four weeks off this break, I chose to spend only 10 days of it at home.

I realized when I’m home, I’m not happy. Humboldt is where my life is at. Guiltily but truthfully, I’m admitting that I simply don’t feel as close to certain people from back home anymore. There are places I’d rather be exploring and other college friends whom I want to spend time with.

Though it’s depressing, drifting is natural. When you make memories with new people, it becomes apparent how desolate the memories of your old friendships are, especially when my college friends were there for me during my struggles while high school friends weren’t. I learned to depend on my newer friends for support.

We need friends to be stable and accessible. The bitterest realization I ever made was when I thought to myself, “You weren’t there for me when I needed you and I got through it. So I don’t need you.”

If I saw some of my high school friends today, it just wouldn’t be the same. One of the most hopeless feelings in the world is chasing after something when it’s already gone.

With that in mind, what will never change is the impact these people had on me. To many, high school would be considered our formative years, and the people who surrounded me in high school influenced and shaped me into the respectable person I am today. The friends I made in high school will always be a part of me. Wherever we go out into the world, I know that in a way we’re always going to be connected.

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