Why Childhood Friendships Are Different (And Just Better)

April 16, 2018  |  
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Gettyimages.com/Smiling sisters embracing in front of white background

Throughout your life, you’ll find souls you connect with—friends you instantly click with and want to see more of. But you know, deep down, nothing will ever compare to those childhood friendships. In fact, if you really think about it, there is a good chance that your childhood friendships are some of the few that have managed to last (and going strong) for a long time. You may have made friends during your adult life, but many of those friendships may have petered out, or even gone up in flames. Childhood friendships just seem to contain some glue that makes them stick. I bet you have childhoods friends who, you just couldn’t imagine life without them. There is nothing they could do to make you not want to be friends anymore. It’s such a strong bond. Here is why childhood friendships are different (and just better).

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You had plenty of free time

When you were a kid, you had nothing to do. You thought you did, and now you think it’s hilarious that you used to think you were busy. As kids, you really had full weekends to just pal around together—you could spend 48 hours straight with your buddies. Today, you’re lucky if you can spend two hours a month with a new friend. You just had the time to bond with people in childhood that you don’t have now.

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You have more room to make mistakes

You have a long history there. You have had a lot of good years. You’ve been there for each other in a lot of ways. You can’t count the many wonderful things you’ve done for one another. In other words, you’ve built up some equity so, if you make a mistake, your friendship bounces back pretty quickly.

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You can call each other on mistakes

You can call your childhood friend out on her sh*t and she’ll listen because she knows that you know her pretty well. She may not take criticism from new friends but from you? She knows you probably have a point.

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You take one another’s advice seriously

You also take your friend’s life advice to heart. Does she think you’re on the wrong career path? Drinking too much? Dating the wrong person? You don’t take that advice lightly. This person knows you better than almost anyone.

 

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They know all the backstories

They know everything about your family, your other friends, and anyone you’ve ever dated. They understand the complex dynamics you have with everyone else in your life. You can tell them a story about a lunch you had with your sister, and they pick up on all the little things that aren’t said.

“People depend on me”

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They know about your weak spots

They know about some of the tougher things you’ve gone through in life. They know about trauma you have been through. They know when to tread lightly and be gentle with you.

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You can hang like family

When you make plans, you don’t really make plans. You just agree to meet at one person’s house and from there, you’ll see where the day takes you. You don’t mind just sitting on the couch, keeping one another company as you answer emails on your laptops or walk the dog or do laundry.

business woman tablet suit and tie

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They keep you humble

It doesn’t matter how successful you are or how big time you are in the eyes of others: to your childhood friend, you’re still that girl who would make videotapes of herself singing Mariah Carey songs.

 

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You’ve survived every phase

You survived your teen years, those odd high school years when you wound up in different groups (the cool group vs the band group), your college years when one person got really into music festivals and, uh, the substances that go with them. So you can get through anything.

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Traveling together is easy

Childhood friends make the best travel companions. You don’t feel the need to tiptoe around subjects like “What should we do today?” the way you do with newer friends. You can hash it out, tease each other’s ideas, and nobody gets in a fight about it.

A troubled wife turns to Reddit for advice after struggling to forge a relationship with her new husband's ex.

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You have an unspoken language

You can tell each other a lot without even speaking. You know how your childhood friend feels about someone else in the room without having to ask. You can pick up on their energy and know just what energy they need from you at any given time.

Half Of Your "Friends" Don't Consider You A Friend

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They’re up-to-date on everything

You don’t need to attempt to give them the reader’s digest version on massive topics like your sibling’s divorce or the collapse of your dad’s company. They’ve been there for every step of the way, which means you can pick up just where you left off and give new updates.

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They know your triggers

Your childhood friend knows your triggers and (usually) makes a point to steer clear of them so as not to upset you. Other (newer) friends just don’t know about those.

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You feel like kids together

You just feel like kids when you get together. That’s such a beautiful thing. Don’t we all just search for ways to feel like kids again as adults?

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It feels like coming home

Being with your childhood friend feels like coming home. You feel like you can kick up your feet, and be exactly who you are—no filters, no facades, no bending over backward to accommodate anyone’s needs.

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