Making new friends as an adult is wonderful.
If you're lucky, you have a couple lifelong friends who have known you since childhood. These are the friends who were present for formative experiences that bond you together: your first kiss behind the hand ball wall, that time you got busted for sneaking out of your bedroom window, blowing out the speakers singing to the Dixie Chicks the moment you got your drivers license, etc. Those friends are treasured and irreplaceable. But you know what's also awesome? New friends you collect along life's path. Adult friends. People who meet, accept and understand you as the person you've become -- the person you are right now.
An adult friend of mine sent a nice NYT piece around to our friend group this weekend -- a little crew of cherished friends that has formed over the past 2.5 years. I <3 Friendship.
"Lovers face each other, but friends stand side-by-side, facing the world — often working on its behalf. Aristotle suggested that friendship is the cornerstone of society. Montaigne thought that it spreads universal warmth.
Friendship helps people make better judgments. So much of deep friendship is thinking through problems together: what job to take; whom to marry. Friendship allows you to see your own life but with a second sympathetic self.
Second, friends usually bring out better versions of each other. People feel unguarded and fluid with their close friends. If you’re hanging around with a friend, smarter and funnier thoughts tend to come burbling out.
Finally, people behave better if they know their friends are observing. Friendship is based, in part, on common tastes and interests, but it is also based on mutual admiration and reciprocity. People tend to want to live up to their friends’ high regard. People don’t have close friendships in any hope of selfish gain, but simply for the pleasure itself of feeling known and respected."