How To Make Your Aquaintance Your Friend
Start writing a post
Friendships

How To Get Over That Awkward Phase To Finally Become Friends

Because as we grow older, it gets harder.

1149
How To Get Over That Awkward Phase To Finally Become Friends
Personal Photo

Having friends? Amazing. I would definitely recommend. Friendship is hands down one of the most important relationships in my life and they play a big part in shaping how we interact with the world around us.

It's just that the making friends part — the ambiguous zone between meeting someone new and comfortably calling them a friend — is, lets be real, awful: the small talk, the worrying about coming off as either too needy or too disinterested, the pretending not to size each other up while really sizing each other up.

Nowadays, it is even worse. Texting a person for the first time? Not knowing what their style of texting is and thus, not understanding or even worse, misunderstanding the embedded messages they are sending is the worst. Do you use emojis, do you approve of my usage of emojis, and do you use proper punctuation or are you just disinterested in this conversation? It is very confusing to understand if this person wants to connect more in your life or not.

It is disheartening to find out that the person you were trying so hard to connect with is just being polite or didn't understand that you want to be friends with them, not just acquaintances.

My roommate told me about this phenomenon that occurs during your sophomore year: The Sophomore Slump. Whoever coined it, kudos on the alliteration, first of all. Second of all, apparently in sophomore year, we experience this rift with our current friends that we have made since freshman year. According to various peers, it is in sophomore year that you "grow out" those friends you have and find others (maybe in your classes or clubs or just walking down campus) that somehow complement your life better.

I don't know how true this is because I'm smack in the middle of my sophomore year and I haven't experienced that, yet.

I'm writing this article because I remember how it is to make new friends. And it sucks.

There's a reason everyone likes to complain about how much dating sucks, and yet we rarely talk about how forging new friendships is just another variation of the same awkward dance. It's like when people say they wish they could skip straight to the comfortable Netflix-and-sweatpants stage of a relationships; the earliest days of a new friendship would be so much nicer if you could bypass conversations about siblings and favorite colors and go right into being able to carry on a conversation that consists mostly of the word "ugh" back and forth.

Author Jeffrey Hall, a communications professor at the University of Kansas who researches interpersonal communication, calculated just how long you have to spend in the tunnel before you reach the light at the end: On average, it takes about 50 hours of time with someone before you consider them a casual friend, 90 hours before you feel comfortable upgrading them to just "friend," and around 200 hours of quality time before you'd consider the two of you to be close.

I'm looking at the results of this study and I don't think that's how I roll. I don't think that I would spend 50 hours with a person and just call them a casual friend. Like wow, 50 hours is a lot of time together. I'd at least give them the label of "friend." There may also be cases when you just click with a person and get comfortable with them in a really small period of time.

Friendships are unique relationships because unlike family relationships, we choose to enter into them but unlike other voluntary bonds, like romantic relationships, they lack a formal structure. You wouldn't go months without speaking to or seeing your significant other (if you can help it), but you might go that long without contacting a friend.

It's a weird conundrum to be friends with someone. There is no pressure to show how good the relationship is to peers which is a constant pressure that is found in romantic relationships but at the same time, this doesn't mean you want to meet your friends once every month to "catch up" and that's it.

We aren't obligated to our friends the way we are to our romantic partners, our jobs, and our families. We'll be sad to go, but go we will. This is one of the inherent tensions of friendships. Friendship is a relationship with no strings attached except the ones you choose to tie, one that's just about being there, as best as you can.

To become friends, you have to change up the relationship and spend time together outside of the function or event that brought you together, and if you both are willing to, then you are taking the next step in this awkward journey of becoming friends with a person.

That is the first step to many, many more steps that makes two people friends. If someone is interested in being a friend, however, small talk transforms quickly into "big talk," or more questions about your life and interests. If they randomly text you about their day or what they are up to, that's because they are attempting to learn more about your life when you reciprocate in kind. However, there is a difference between talking about your life in a way that invites conversation and dumping out a ton of personal information that leaves people uncomfortable. Share things in small doses, and use personal stories to help your new friend understand the circumstances about events you speak about.

There is a fine line between building a rapport with a person and making them feel like you are imposing on them but you can make it work. Each journey to get out of the awkwardness is different because different people have diverse limits on the duality of independence and involvement.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Student Life

Top 10 Reasons My School Rocks!

Why I Chose a Small School Over a Big University.

95400
man in black long sleeve shirt and black pants walking on white concrete pathway

I was asked so many times why I wanted to go to a small school when a big university is so much better. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure a big university is great but I absolutely love going to a small school. I know that I miss out on big sporting events and having people actually know where it is. I can't even count how many times I've been asked where it is and I know they won't know so I just say "somewhere in the middle of Wisconsin." But, I get to know most people at my school and I know my professors very well. Not to mention, being able to walk to the other side of campus in 5 minutes at a casual walking pace. I am so happy I made the decision to go to school where I did. I love my school and these are just a few reasons why.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lots of people sat on the cinema wearing 3D glasses
Pinterest

Ever wonder what your friend meant when they started babbling about you taking their stapler? Or how whenever you ask your friend for a favor they respond with "As You Wish?" Are you looking for new and creative ways to insult your friends?

Well, look no further. Here is a list of 70 of the most quotable movies of all time. Here you will find answers to your questions along with a multitude of other things such as; new insults for your friends, interesting characters, fantastic story lines, and of course quotes to log into your mind for future use.

Keep Reading...Show less
New Year Resolutions

It's 2024! You drank champagne, you wore funny glasses, and you watched the ball drop as you sang the night away with your best friends and family. What comes next you may ask? Sadly you will have to return to the real world full of work and school and paying bills. "Ah! But I have my New Year's Resolutions!"- you may say. But most of them are 100% complete cliches that you won't hold on to. Here is a list of those things you hear all around the world.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lifestyle

The Ultimate Birthday: Unveiling the Perfect Day to Celebrate!

Let's be real, the day your birthday falls on could really make or break it.

42808
​different color birthday candles on a cake
Blacksburg Children's Museum

You heard it here first: birthdays in college are some of the best days of your four years. For one day annually, you get to forget about your identity as a stressed, broke, and overworked student, and take the time to celebrate. You can throw your responsibilities for a day, use your one skip in that class you hate, receive kind cards and gifts from loved ones and just enjoy yourself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Featured

Unleash Inspiration: 15 Relatable Disney Lyrics!

Leave it to Disney to write lyrics that kids of all ages can relate to.

71381
The 15 most inspiring Disney songs

Disney songs are some of the most relatable and inspiring songs not only because of the lovable characters who sing them, but also because of their well-written song lyrics. While some lyrics make more sense with knowledge of the movie's story line that they were written for, other Disney lyrics are very relatable and inspiring for any listener.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments