• Other Friendship Advice

Are high school friendships meant to last forever?

Published: July 22, 2015 | By | 5 Replies Continue Reading
A young teen begins to feel like she’s outgrowing her high school friendships.


So I’m near the end of my final year at high school and have come across a bit of a dilemma. I currently hang around with some people who I have been friends with since Year 8 but it’s becoming more difficult to talk with them.

Sure, they are amazing people but I have realized that I am completely different than them. They are naive and innocent (innocent in their activities, not their knowledge if that makes sense). They have different interests than I do. For example, they are obsessed with anime, not keen on going out, and think getting below 70% on a test will ruin them.

They are great friends and I trust them…. but that’s not me. Another downside: Everyone else thinks that is me too, and sometimes don’t want to get to know me because they think they already do. I like to go out with others to gatherings, still do well in school but not freak out, am interested in writing/playing music, writing stories and things that seem to be a bit opposite to the people I sit with.

I can tell most things with my best friend since Year 8 but lately I haven’t been able to tell her things that are going on in my life because she just doesn’t understand. She hasn’t experienced the things I have. She’s never had a boyfriend, never been kissed, and never really had guys like her.

I’m not saying that’s a bad thing, but there are certain things you can only tell your best friend, not the world. She’s not good at keeping my secrets either. She accidentally tells other people in my group. The more I think about it, the more I realize these aren’t the people I fit in with. I feel bad about saying this but I can’t hide from the truth.

I’ve kind of talked to my friends from other groups about this problem, and they say to try hanging out with them as school comes to a close, but I feel really bad about leaving my current group so close to the end. Should I try for a new group of friends or should I wait until after school ends? I just feel like an outsider but don’t want to abruptly leave and hurt them. Thanks for any help you can give me. 🙂

Signed, Samantha


Hi Samantha,

What I hear you saying is that you’re outgrowing your high school friendships and wish to be seen as an individual so that you can make different friends that share your interests. You’re growing and learning about the young woman you’re becoming. You are doing exactly what teenagers are supposed to do as they become young adults. High school is a time of figuring things out. Many people change friendships and groups during that time.

You mentioned that people think they already know you. Think about ways that you can show people the you they don’t know. Outwardly, you can change your hair or clothing, you can walk with more confidence and smile at those you’d like to befriend. You can talk to different people who share your interest in music and writing. If your school has a newspaper, literary club, band or chorus you can seek friends from those extracurricular activities.

You owe your current group of friends kindness and respect, not your entire social life. You can tell your group that you want to sit with Marie at lunch today, and tomorrow sit with your group. If you find yourself enjoying Marie’s table more and want to sit with them permanently, be honest. Tell your friends a truncated version of what you’ve written in the letter and keep being friendly, keep talking to your current and new friends in class. Friendship is voluntary, you get to choose who you are and with whom you want to spend your time.

Signed, *Amy Feld

*Amy Feld, PhD, MSW has trained and worked as a child psychologist.

Disclaimer: Nothing in this or any other post is intended to substitute for medical, psychiatric or clinical diagnosis/treatment. Rather, all posts are written as the type of advice that one friend might give to another.

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Category: Child and adolescent friendships, OTHER ADVICE

Comments (5)

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  1. B says:

    I am in my second year of high school and I’m having some problems. I don’t feel like I belong in my friend group. In the first year I hung out with my friends all the time and it was so fun. I loved them, but now it feels like I’m the odd one out. If I’m not at school they don’t notice and they never invite me anywhere if they hangout. I really want to switch schools because there is another school where I live and I know people there but I’m scared. I don’t know if I should stay And deal with it or leave and go to a different school. I know moving to another school would be better but I’d be too scared and plus i don’t know how to tell my parents. Please help.

  2. Tanja says:

    Very few people my age, nearly 40, still have friends from high school. I have only two from high school, but one lives in a different country and we see each other once a year. I do not really like her, but there is history and it is not like she lives here. If we lived in the same city, I doubt that we would still talk. Every year when she does come, I look at it as a chore to get together. We met her this summer and it just confirmed that I do not really like her, but it was only a week together and it happens once a year, I can tolerate it.

    But, I don’t like her husband. She is judgmental and when my 3 yr old had a tantrum, I would say in a year or so she will be different yet again and she smirked and said “no she won’t”. For me, I thought, you are not there with the kids yet, so she doesn’t know. My answer is if you are lucky you will have a friend, at least one from high school that you will talk to for life. But, my guess is that with kids, husband, jobs etc, I think you will form new friendships and that they are not meant to last forever.

  3. Amanda Smith says:

    I do have a good friends that is nice to me all the time .
    Maybe I say hi a new friends that is cool .
    It a person that in mind age .
    It a boys are nice to me I was so happy all the time .
    Because they can be cool.
    If you have a crush a boys just say hi too them .
    Have you date someone that in your age .
    Kept to your self .
    They can be stronger then you can say hello too them .
    Maybe they can ask you out with them .
    They can be nice too you .
    I can be smart every thing .
    Because I do like them because they can be nice to me .
    Maybe li can say yes or maybe .
    Good hey .
    Fro your friends ?
    Amanda Smith …!?.♣♦

  4. tanja says:

    Well, I suggest you do nothing. Nothing, that is right. Focus on doing your thing and do nothing in regards to friends. You are lucky to have a group and where you are the one making these decisions. Maybe your friends may be thinking the same thing you are. Focus on school, be nice and kind to everyone. If they invite you out and you are unable to go say so and if you do not want to go, say another time. If you meet other people and you want to hang out and you have the time do it.

    As an older adult, way older, I want to give the advice not to burn any bridges because you never know what will happen. After high school friends fade and with career, marriage and kids and uni, not in that order, friendships either grow apart, take a break and reconnect again or fade and never to be heard from again. That is life. If you are lucky, you may have one or two people that you least expected to stay in touch from high school. Even as adults, you may get irritated and wonder why you are even friends and then you remember, there is history and that is special. My story is that I have two highschool friends. I was never apart of a group in high school anyway, but we were friends and we hung out. In any case, we went to different uni’s, they made their friends and I made new friends as well. Then years passed, we kept a bit of contact. One got married after the other and then it was my turn, marriage and kids. Now, one of our friends has 4 kids, the other has 2, just had her second baby in May and the other friend has 2 has well. We see each other once a year in the summer as one lives in the states and the rest are spread far out within the Toronto area. Well, this summer we planned a trip to meet in Vermont without families for a week. They have been in and out and in again my life for years, now we are all close to 40 and we are traveling this year together to mark the 25 yrs we have known each other. Do I always like them….no. Do I always like the kids and hubbies? no. But, I love them and I love their friendship and I am lucky I still have this connection and it is one I really do not want to break because we are all genuine and they know me and how weird I am and can be and they still are okay with that for the most part and I them as well. Do we complain about each other behind each other’s backs? Yes…..but I also do with my sister, she drives me crazy, but I love her and that is life. So, unless they are mean to you and they make you feel bad about yourself or if they want you to engage in criminal activity or they are not happy for you if you accomplish something or they like it when you are sad or disrespect you in any way, then leave the friendship and I have had to do that a few times in my life. But, remember not everyone can meet every single one of your needs so accept and learn the people that you genuinely like aside from a few quirks and annoying things here or there and learn who you can go to and for what reason based on personality. You have a long road of many disappointments to go through still, but if you are lucky you will have one friend that will stay throughout life that is not your hubby or kids one day. But someone to see you through all that or at least know you through all that, even if they are not the perfect friend all of the time, they have shit to deal with of their own as well, keep in mind. Stay in school, focus on those people and things that matter, hopefully it falls into place, may not, but at least most of expectations may be met.

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