In honor of today being national best friend day in the US I’ve been reflecting a lot on friendships, and the way living abroad affects them.
Living abroad affects friendships in many ways, it creates new one, distances old ones but also sheds a lot of light into the strength of certain friendships.
For my existing friendships this experience has really proved to me who my real friends are. The reality is keeping in touch with people back home is hard … things such as having a different phone number, being 6 hours ahead, and just overall being super busy … while this is not an excuse for disconnect, it is a challenge.
But even with the distance, growing up and growing apart from people from home… it has showed me who I can really lean on and rely on. There are people who are far far away in distance, but are there for me when I need it. We don’t get to talk every day, some times we go weeks without talking but the friendship is still just the same. These people back home I still have I know not only do we still have our friendships but also that our friendships have grown and are even stronger.
Then there are the people I have met during my time abroad. Although I have known these people for such a short time, some of these people I’ve met I have extremely strong bonds with. The shared experiences, opening up to people quickly, only having eachother to lean on…. these will form strong and quick bonds.
Not only have the people I’ve met been amazing and supportive friends, but they’ve taught me so much. I’ve learned a lot about the world, different places, different cultures … all this by meeting new people from living abroad. They’ve really been there for me when I’ve needed them. The people you meet abroad in a way become almost like family to you. They’re your support system in both good and bad times. You have no family in the place your living, and probably neither do most of them, so you become really dependent on eachother and form a really great and close bond. Living abroad really shows you how important friendships are…
These people I call my friends have inspired me, as well as incouraged me to do more, to travel more, to live more to have more adventure. I’m so lucky for all the wonderful friends I have in my life, both near and far.