What’s The Deal With Making Friends In Your 20s?!
May 2023 | Written by Suni Crane
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Making friends in your twenties is no easy task. With the internet exclusively showing highlight reels, it can be tough to feel like we’re at the right stage in life. This decade is widely dubbed the time of “finding yourself” or “living life to the fullest,” but I call bullshit. Let me strip you of this constricting feeling; your twenties are whatever you want them to be.
Making friends can be difficult, no matter the circumstances: moving to a new city, starting a new job, going to graduate school, or friends moving far away. I’ve experienced a mix; I recently graduated college, moved to a new city, began working from home, and all my friends moved away. Life hits you hard once you graduate, and school doesn’t teach you how to handle it.
I recently tested the waters with Bumble BFF, and now I’m here to give you the scoop. The first few days were discouraging; you swipe left ten times to swipe right once (left=no, right=yes). The profiles are decently similar to those on dating apps. You see the person’s face and name, then swipe down to read their bio and see more photos. The oddest part is that you are practically forced to judge a book by its cover.
Typically, when making new friends, you meet in person and have the chance to get to know one another before making plans. With Bumble BFF, you swipe right and begin chatting in the app. Typically, one of you will send your contact information so that you can continue the conversation elsewhere.
Rarely do both parties follow through to meet in person, but the single time I did, I had a wonderful time. The only person I actually went on a (friend) date with turned out to be one of my favorite people I’ve met in the city. We have grown our friendship with GNOs, and fun dinner plans every time we have the chance.
Instagram is another amazing resource for making friends. I enjoy using Instagram because you can slowly work up your courage and comfort level before reaching out. Begin with a simple follow, then like their photos and stories, and once you’re comfortable enough, go in for a direct message. My go-to was some version of “I’m new to the city and looking to make new friends,” I mean, who can say no to that?!
All in all, making new friends in adulthood is a steep hill to climb. During grade school and college, peers were at an arm’s distance, making it incredibly easy to make friends. As time passes and we grow, we are also pretty particular with the people we allow into our circle–which is good.
The most significant factor to base any friendship on is common interests. Go to workout classes, outdoor activities, or local events because I guarantee you’re not the only one in attendance trying to make new friends. Meeting at an event surrounding fashion, fitness, health, cars, etc., will automatically give you a handful of talking points.
No matter how or where you meet a potential friend, one of the best tips I can give is to ask questions. A great way to get people to like you and enjoy the conversation is to get them talking about themselves, so just sit back and listen. Remember the tiny details and bring them back up on your next date; show you’re a good listener and will be a present friend.
You’ve got this. Making friends, and good ones at that, can be challenging and time-consuming but incredibly rewarding. Trust that you deserve good people in your life and go after it!