As we get older, life becomes clearer. Priorities take shape, and the process of learning what we don’t want leads us to better understand what we do want.
Friendships, in turn, prove their preciousness with time. When we graduate from high school, college and are scattered around the globe, our best friends are the ones who stick.
Time and distance are irrelevant.
But another thing happens as we mature; people change. Not fundamentally in their cores, but people do change, and so friendships change, too.
Life happens. External circumstances have effects and sometimes, the closest of friends diverge on separate paths. Trajectories and goals, which were once shared, become individual.
But, just because a cherished friendship changes doesn’t mean it loses its value; growing independently doesn’t mean growing apart.
When it comes to your best friends, this process of growth can be frustrating and even sad.
It’s tough to wake up one day, after a dissatisfying conversation or a disagreement, to the realization that the two of you no longer see eye to eye on something. There’s a notable shift.
But, don’t be critical of each other just because you’ve both changed. Change and growth are inevitable.
Take a close look at the friendship, and if the loyalty and love is there, that’s what matters. Nobody is perfect; nobody can give you everything.
Different friends fulfill different needs. Embrace each of your best friendships for what they give you. Cherish the good and don’t focus on where they lack.
Appreciate the unique relationship you share and its positive force in your life.
Here are the 12 different types of best friends you’ll have in life (some may overlap):
1. The best friend you’re weirdest with.
There’s the best friend you bonded with mostly because you share an identical sense of humor.
She brings out your utmost weirdness and vice versa.
It was never a spoken connection; you just get each other’s weirdness.
When the two of you are together, you’re constantly laughing in your own bizarre, hilarious worlds, which others are baffled by.
2. The best friend who brings out your adventurous side.
This is the best friend who pushes your limits and who inspires you to step outside of your comfort zone.
Her free spirit and curiosity stir something in you that’s a bit uncharted, but always thrilling.
She prompts the desire to quit your job and buy a one-way ticket to Buenos Aires, volunteer at an orphanage in Cambodia, or something like that.
She’s quirky; she marches to the beat of her own drum. You know that surrounding yourself with her spunk and appetite for life is instrumental to your growth.
3. The best friend you call crying.
Whether you’re on the verge of tears or in the middle of a full-on meltdown, there’s that one person you instinctively call first.
Even if you haven’t talked in a few weeks and she doesn’t know the full circumstances surrounding your horrific situation, she’s the one you have to call.
She’ll listen to every word and even if she doesn’t know exactly what to do, just talking to her makes you feel instantly better.
4. The best friend you shared your teenage years with.
Your best friend through adolescence is likely going to be someone who sticks with you for life.
You’ve simply been through too much together, sharing the exhilarating (and sometimes painful) memories of growing up.
You two stole your dad's beer and snuck out of the house at 2 am to drive around town with the boys you liked. You memorized every song by Bruce Springsteen and John Mellencamp.
You borrowed each other’s Solow skirts and coated your faces in bronzer until you looked like Magda in "There’s Something About Mary."
At the end of the day, sharing these coming-of-age experiences is invaluable, and a key part of your lifelong friendship.
5. The best friend who always gives you solid advice.
No matter how much time has passed and no matter the physical distance between the two of you, there is that one person you can always count on to listen and give you honest, wholehearted advice.
She’s the one you call when you need the unequivocal truth laid out in front of you in the form of genuine guidance.
6. The best friend who is your opposite, but feels like home.
This is a best friend you’ve grown up with, someone who has known you from the start.
Her presence grounds you. Though you two may have developed opposite interests and become different individuals over the years, having her in your life roots you to something fundamental within yourself.
Seeing her or even just talking to her is a comfort. She feels like coming home, and you’d be lost without her as an anchor.
7. The best friend who sparks your creative/intellectual energies.
She’s the one who sparks your artistic side, and your interest in cultural topics such as film and modern art.
She drags you to the Guggenheim on Sundays, edits your short stories and inspires you to write new ones.
She reads you passages from Rilke and sends you Rumi quotes. She spends an hour dissecting your astrological sign.
You have long, substantial conversations about topics like philosophy, writing and religion, all of which leave you with the desire to go create and learn.
8. The best friend who is your soul sister.
This is a “love at first sight” kind of friendship; you knew it was right the moment you met.
You clicked instantly, forming a bond that is powerful and lasting.
The two of you may come from different backgrounds or have met later in life, but your personalities and interests are so in sync that you feel sure you knew her in another world.
You see and feel life in the same way. She’s your soul sister.
9. The best friend who is objective.
She’s certainly not the most sensitive friend you have, but this person isn’t afraid to tell it like it is.
Her brutal honestly and bluntness can come off as cold, but you appreciate her for these qualities.
Sometimes everyone needs a dose of the cold hard truth. Focus on how her presence in your life serves you, not her lack of empathy.
10. The best friend you fight with like a sister.
She’s more like a cousin or a sister than a friend, though you’re not related.
But, that doesn’t stop you from picking fights with her every two seconds, the way you would with your sister or mom.
You know she’ll love you forever and vice versa, so it doesn’t matter if you yell at her for eating all of your favorite cereal or wrinkling your dress.
Your guards are completely down. Sometimes you annoy each other close to the breaking point, but that doesn’t change a thing. She’s family, and you couldn’t do it without her.
11. The best friend you talk to all day long.
This is the best friend you are in constant communication with.
Your daily exchanges consist of G-chat, texting, unflattering Snapchats and one or two five-minute phone calls just to check in.
You inform her when you notice a new freckle or can’t decide what to have for lunch. She’s basically the friend who you’re dating.
12. The best friend you talk to once every four months.
Some best friends are harder to keep in touch with, especially when you’re living in different places.
But your lack of communication doesn’t take away from the value of the friendship.
Months can go by and with one phone call, but the two of you pick up right where you left off. Time is irrelevant.
Your friendship is as instinctive as breathing; you don’t need to be conscious of it to know it’s as strong as ever.