Relationship support from friends is essential
The further I progress into my 20s, the more the path my friends and I plan to take becomes intrinsically linked with our partners’.
I have come to terms with the fact that at some point I’ll have to grow up and stop living with roommates. But this doesn’t mean that everyone I know accepts that.
For some students at the end of their university career, graduation means the beginning of a life with someone else.
Although this is not necessarily a negative development, the progression towards marriage or living with a partner often draws a thick line between the “haves” and the “have-nots” of serious relationships.
Recently, as my friends have begun moving in with their partners, getting engaged or even married, I have noticed a significant divide between these individuals and my single friends.
Not everyone seems to fit the package of such a polarization, but its occurrence can have a detrimental impact on friendships. It is a divide rife with misunderstandings, jealousy and harsh words that I find myself in the middle of.
Personally, I am not at a place in my relationship where I feel the need to move in with my boyfriend, or anywhere close to being in a position to get married. However, I’ll admit that I have been swept up in a world where I get to be my friends’ bridesmaids, plan engagement parties and attend bridal shows.
Being single is not a determining factor in these situations, either. Friends of mine who criticize their friends’ partnerships are sometimes in relationships themselves.
Often there are individuals who do not see a serious relationship in their future until a decade after they graduate from university. However, just because it’s not for them doesn’t mean they have to chastise their friends over their commitments.
Going over the top is something I’m guilty of (yes, I do often mark the pages I think my friends will like when skimming through bridal magazines), but there is always something to be said for the support of friends, whether as extreme as wading through an endless array of centerpieces or a simple congratulations.
Passing judgment on the relationships of others has become commonplace among the groups of friends I belong to, and I can’t quite figure out if it’s pettiness or jealousy.
Perhaps it’s a mixture of both – a resentment that’s fed by the immaturity of the few who plan to dampen the fun of growing up to the point of wanting to share a part of his or her life with someone who’s not just a friend.
As my friends move out to be with their boyfriends, roommates are left feeling abandoned.
While some of my girlfriends look through bridal magazines and plan bachelorette parties, a few loom in the corner and whisper hostilities about their friends being too young and moving too fast.
But if we are old enough to have friends who are getting engaged, we are old enough to grow up and be happy for them. If our friends are old enough to start a life with their partner and they are excited, we should also be excited for them.
What others do in their relationships and what they choose to do with their lives should not affect the way we live our own.
If that means abandoning a feeling of envy or resentment towards a friend in search of happiness, then that may be a fall some have to force themselves to take in the name of friendship.