Losing Touch with friends from home
When you leave home to go to University, you may feel that you are leaving your school friends behind. Some of your old friendship group may be going to other Universities, or staying at home to begin full time work. This is a natural change, which can lead in some cases to friendship groups drifting apart.
University is a learning experience, not just for academic knowledge but for acquiring life experience too. As students, we can all grow into our own individual personalities, which may be different from those we had growing up. Sometimes, these changes can mean that you feel like you have less in common with your childhood friends. You may find that you lose touch over time. If you still enjoy your existing friendships, make sure that you take care to remain in contact.
When you go home for your holidays, take the time to meet up with friends. Make sure that you remember to listen to their stories. Also, pay attention, so that the catch up is a mutual conversation. If you spend the whole time talking about how great your University friends are, they may feel a little left out.
You can make many friends during your first few weeks at University. You may end up with lots of numbers in your phone of people you have met and don’t remember, such as ‘Dave with the hat’. Your Facebook friend numbers are likely to shoot up just during the first few weeks of University. This is great, just as long as you don’t expect all these new acquaintances to become your next best friends.
Friendships take a while to settle and mature into firm relationships. It is common for some or even most of the mates you make initially not to develop into long-term friendships. Try not to be offended if you stop seeing or hearing from some of your new friends after a few weeks. They may like you, have made lots of new acquaintances during their first year and perhaps have more in common with someone else they have met.
If you are finding that you don’t have many friendships at University with people who share your interests, try joining a new society. There are so many societies at Swansea University for lots of different sports and hobbies. You are bound to find one or two groups that you want to join. You are much more likely to form a lasting friendship when you have similar tastes. You can use these shared interests to strengthen the bonds of friendship.
Revenge is not so sweet
- If you have fallen out with a friend, try not to act out against them if you are feeling angry. Remember that posting anything negative on social media, or telling everyone you meet about your argument, may not only reflect badly on you, but may also unfairly damage the reputation of your ex-friend. Once you have calmed down about your falling out, you would most likely regret what you said. You could be embarrassed about how you acted.
- Always try and apologise, even if you think you may not be friends again. It is the mature thing to do, and should prevent any ill feeling continuing on indefinitely.
- You may find it helpful to look back on the friendship and consider what went wrong, and what part you played in its breakdown. You may in time, begin to see how the friendship was not the ideal fit for you. This could be helpful for any future friendships. You may develop a better idea of what qualities you would like to have in a friend, and what you can offer to a friendship.
Be a friend to yourself
- Whilst you are coming to terms with your friendship break-up, take some time to look after yourself. Remember, you are the best friend you will ever have!
- Get some exercise and try something new. You never know; you may make a new friend at the gym.
- Lean on your other friends and family for support. Don’t neglect your current friends. There could be a new friendship waiting to blossom from within your existing acquaintances.
- Eat well and look after your mood.
- Seek further support if you are struggling to cope or are not feeling any better after some time.