Making friends in adulthood can be tough sometimes, especially in this social media driven world we live in where we're more comfortable talking to a screen than interacting with "real" humans. So whether you're starting a new job or school, or are just looking to find a new person to binge-watch a Netflix season with, you're bound to go through the following stages when making a new friend.
1. The awkward introduction stage
This is when you've made eye contact far too many times with the other person and now it's getting too uncomfortable to ignore. One of you will have to go up and say hello otherwise you're bound to have to deal with the uncomfortableness and shudder when remembering it all day.
2. The uncomfortable small talk stage
You've gotten past the introduction phase and now know each other's names, but now what? Where do you go from here? Usually, you end up talking about the weather, but you'll eventually grow into being able to discuss the "deep stuff."
3. The self-doubting "they probably don't like me" stage
Everyone does it, everyone questions whether the person they're talking to actually likes them or if they're just putting up with them. Those who deny this stage are just lying.
4. The "is it okay if I add them on social media?" stage
Once you move on from doubting the existence of your friendship, you tend to question everything else about your relationship and it is then that you notice you haven't added them on social media yet. Is now a good time to do so? What if they reject you? You don't want to seem over eager or they might just stop talking to you all together.
5. The "is it acceptable if we talk outside of class?" stage
Flashbacks to your first meeting come rushing back as you question whether or not you should invite them to your friend's party on Saturday. If they say yes will you be able to hold a conversation for longer than the occasional five minutes you spend conversing in class or while at the water cooler?
6. The "would it be weird if we hang out alone?" stage
They've met your other friends and you've met theirs. Bowling is always a fun time, but are you able to move past the group activities and just go to dinner with the two of you?
7. The inside joke stage
You can just be sitting there watching YouTube videos and all of a sudden you both explode with laughter about that "one time when..." This is the stage where you often find yourself making your other friends uncomfortable because they don't understand what you're referencing and you don't have the time or energy to explain it to them.
8. The "I can enter your house without knocking and eat your food" stage
Your house becomes their house and vice versa. You have lost all sense of boundaries with each other and you wouldn't even be surprised if you came home from work one day to find your friend in your kitchen eating your leftover lasagna from last week; in fact, you'd be delighted that they were there and would probably break out a bottle of wine.
9. The "I can trust you with everything" stage
There are no secrets between the two of you and they know all of your embarrassing childhood memories. They come to your parent's house for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner because you can't stand to be apart from them for that long.
10. The best friend/ "I would die for you" stage
Nothing can come between you two because you're just that close now. Your other friends joke about how you're "sister wives," but you don't even mind because you've found your person.