When Best Friends Stray

Hold the phone. Stop the press. This quest is being momentarily put on hold. Why? Because it’s not necessary to search for a new BFF when my current BFF is visiting!

That’s right, dear readers. Callie, my high school bestie, is in Chicago until Sunday. Yay. She got here last night and we have already gone back and dissected our senior yearbook (much to our husbands’ amusement), because that’s what old friends do: revert back.

One really interesting thing about Callie being here is that while my local friendships have blossomed in the last year and a half, she is starting to find herself in a similar position that I was way back when. To be clear, she has a thriving network in New York and will never be on a true BFF search. And one of her closest pals lives down the block from her. But there was a time when all her best friends lived nearby. She was never going to leave NYC because everyone she loved was there. Then I left. Then another of our high school besties. Then, this week, she threw a going away party for another.

That’s the thing about New York. After college, it seems that everyone is there (at least if you are an East Coast native like me). But as time passes and the big 3-0 inches closer, people start to leave for greener (cheaper, more spacious) pastures.

When you arrive at a friend search like I did, you can kind of see it coming. Before I made the move to Chicago–back when moving day was a month or two away–I spent time thinking (obsessing?) about this. How would I make friends? Where would I find them? Was it kosher to approach the girl at yoga class? But when you stay in one place while everyone around you leaves–for other states, or the suburbs–it’s tougher to prepare. You may not know what hit you.

Let us all just pray that of this ragtag gang of Chicago friends I’ve found, some stay put. ‘Cause I’m not going anywhere. I couldn’t do this again.

Have you been there? Sticking in one place while everyone else seemed to jet off to the ‘burbs or other cities? How did you handle it? What do you do when you’re smacked with a local BFFlessness you didn’t see coming?

7 Comments

Filed under The Search

7 responses to “When Best Friends Stray

  1. Megan

    I was one of the ones who moved away. I hadn’t actually thought about what it really did to my friends’ social circles until recently, though…

  2. Robin

    That’s where I am right now! I hung out with the same group for a good 7-8 years and then almost everyone moved. I also got married and moved out to the burbs, so things have changed!

    I’ve thought about trying a book club, a new class, etc. but it’s very weird feeling like I almost have to start all over again after living here so long!

  3. Another Callie

    All my closest friends here are originally from somewhere else and in each case all their family is back there too. I dread the day when one of them says “I’m moving”.

  4. I’m always the one moving and sometimes envy the people who stay put, simply because they already have everything in place. This is the first time I’ve thought about the reverse possibility.
    Have a blast with your bestie :-) but don’t forget your readers for too long.

  5. Anonymous

    This is happening to me right now. I am inching closer to 30 and this year alone I have had 3 of my closest friends and my sister leave the area. I’m not saying that it’s not hard for them to make new friends but at least they can say that they are new to the area. I’ve lived here for 10 years, my friends are just abandoning me…:(

  6. Pingback: Best Friendship: High School Style | MWF Seeking BFF

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