As I write the chapter on friendship, I am reminded of how meaningful and fulfilling our friendships really are. Even though we may not be with all of our friends during this time of year (as the holidays are often focused on family), I still think it’s important that we value the people who have come into our lives. These are the people that make us laugh, hold our hand in times of need, and who can provide us more happiness than we ever imagined.
I thought I’d share with you some of the responses I’ve received from my peers. Their contribution to this project has been immense and I am continually inspired by their words of what many would deem as unexpected wisdom. As I write this book, I hope that I will be able to share a message not only with older generations but amongst my generation. And that message is that young adults are smarter, kinder, and happier than we, and including ourselves, often think.
Here are some of their responses on friendships, which I will keep anonymous:
“Friends are family we choose. They are the handful of people that are by your side when you’re lonely, put a smile on your face when you’re down in the slumps, hold your hand when you’re heartbroken, comfort you with hugs when you’ve lost hope, tell you when you’re wrong and are always there for you, through thick and thin. I live through my friends because I know that they are the ones who won’t judge me by my words or actions. I don’t have to put up a façade or an Iron Man suit. They accept my flaws; they accept me for who I am.”
“My friendships give my life meaning. My friends are there for me when I’m happy and thriving, and perhaps more importantly, still there for me when I’m down. Give me a fortune, put me in the most beautiful place on earth, none of this would matter if I didn’t have anyone to share it with. Even the friends I’ve lost, though I miss them, I can take great joy in remembering the moments we shared together, and in the knowledge that I was privileged to know them.”
“My friends are my support system. Like my family, I can depend on them, and they help me feel safe and cared for. They accept me for who am I and they don’t judge. I know they will always be there when I need them or am feeling lonely. They also help me reduce stress. Not only do they listen to me when I need to vent, but they also provide much needed diversion from what is stressing me. Having a group of friends where I belong makes me a happier person.”