The Truth about Friendships in Your Twenties

Photo by Katarzyna Grabowska from Unsplash

Friendships are one of the most magical beginnings in the world, but not everyone has the luxury of experiencing such. They can happen when one of your mutual friends introduces you or when you’re standing in line and she offered you a tissue after somebody spilled hot tea on your shirt. There are even times when you first look at a person and think you’re never going to be friends with him/her because you two are so different on the surface, but with hindsight, you would’ve had the best time of your life.

Some friendships are also born when your long-time enemy turns out to be your ride-or-die bitch. There are also instances when you know somebody for so long and wonder why the two of you were never friends, but maybe it’s because nobody ever made the first move. If you’re someone who has a knack for making friends, then it probably means you’re a good conversationalist too because it mostly starts with a simple conversation. But regardless of how these friendships start, you rarely see them peak when you reach your twenties (especially when you didn’t have that strong of a bond when you were young). 






Just because someone comes up to you cheerfully and offers you to sit with her group of friends at lunch, doesn’t mean she’s already your friend and vice versa. You don’t notice someone’s ulterior motives until you’ve gotten to know them, and by then the damage has already been done, and there’s nothing you could do. Not everyone who shows kindness in your face is your friend, not until that someone continues to show kindness behind your back.

Beware of people who act too nice to you the first time you met to the point where she seems to agree with everything you say. She’s much like trying to get your trust by putting her best foot forward but with untoward intentions. Given the extremely competitive nature in your twenties, many people would want to keep you closer if you’re considered a threat to them. They would even go too far as making some sort of connection with you so they can earn your trust and exploit your weaknesses.




Understand that your friends can’t always be there for you every time you need them. In your twenties, you can’t call them every time you’re having a dilemma about what to a party or when you’re stuck in an awkward situation and you need help to get out of it. People, including your friends, have lives of their own. They have families to prioritize first or a career they need to persistently tend to, and most times, they need to put their interests first before yours. That’s life.


Remember that when you get to the point when you feel like you’re alone and lonely, accept that your friends also have problems of their own that they may not be telling you. Even though you can be miles apart from your closest friends, their physical absence doesn’t necessarily make them any less of a friend. You can always make plans with your friends and meet up when their schedule gets less hectic. They can also show you emotional support through a video call, but be patient with giving them time to fix their issues first.




Your “friends” aren’t truly your friends if they abandon you in your dark seasons. If your so-called friends are only there for you in joyous moments and gone the moment you open up about a family problem, they don’t have your best interests at heart. This would imply that they couldn’t care less about what might happen to you, and this is not a quality you should be looking for in a friend. It’s a shame how the people who tell you they always have your back are the same people who would make excuses just not to listen to your story.

Don’t be friends with people who couldn’t bother to spare even a few minutes to help you through. This is a proof of cheap words spoken by selfish people. Besides, they don’t necessarily have to sit right next to you and let you lean on their shoulder (especially if circumstances don’t permit) but letting you feel their presence is enough. They can offer you advice, recommend you a song playlist, or do anything that reminds you of your friendship.




You have to admit that not all friendships are going to work. Not all friendships are going to stick with you through thick and thin. As you go on with your lives, you will meet different people, go far places, explore new opportunities; and this will inevitably cause your friendship to drift apart. You won’t always make the same choices are see life exactly the same way, and that’s when, at one point, you would outgrow the people you used to be friends with.

Some friendships that are true and strong enough to withstand distance may still continue but the bond will no longer be as it used to. Accept the fact that at one point, you won’t be seeing each other as often as before and this would change a lot of things. Some friendships will make it but some will end, and that’s okay. You will have a life time to make friends and create memories with other people.




You may not be able to completely digest this thought when you were in high school, but your friends can’t be your friends unless you become their friends. Back when everything was so simple, you went to the same school, hung out most of the time, and talked about the same things and people. You were together almost every day and built a bond that no one else would understand.

But most friendships that start in your youth are fickle and unreliable because you were only caring about the fun of it, like having someone to be with when going to parties. As you get older, you’ll experience disagreements with your friends and it takes more than a Thank You card to redeem it. You need to put your guard down and apologize when you’ve done wrong. In the same way, you need to forgive the lapses of your friends too.




When we were young, one of the main reasons we had so many friends is because we thought, the bigger the group, the happier we are. The more friends, the more attention and validation you gain. We thought that if ever our group would be in a fight, many would support you, fight for you, and believe in you when your reputation is stained. Sadly, you can’t speak for everyone in the group.

As you grow older, you realize how important privacy and peace of mind are. The moment you accept that not everyone in your group likes you for who you are and not what you can do for them, you will be more mindful of who you allow being in your circle. You would be more cautious about who you open up to, who you tell your secrets to, and you expose your worst self to — because vulnerability matters and it comes with a cost.




Like a romantic relationship, friendships need trust and mindfulness. But as you reach your twenties when your life inevitably changes, you will realize you’re seeing life from a completely different perspective than before. The expectations you have about friendships that you see in movies don’t necessarily happen in real life, but it doesn’t mean you won’t have any friends left in your twenties. The truth is: as you get older, a lot of things will turn out differently as they used to, and friendships are no exemption. 


“Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.”

Anais Nin

Published by Monique Renegado

Monique started Life Begins At Twenty as a 20-year-old college student from the Philippines. In her lifestyle and wellness blog, she shares first-hand experiences and soulful advice about student life, relationships, mental health, adulting, and self-growth. Monique is passionate about literature, music, public speaking, and family. Besides studying and blogging full-time, she strives hard to become a published author with her first YA fiction novel and poems. Monique is the older sister you wish you had to help you navigate your twenties successfully. If you want a constant drive for motivation and pep talks, be a part of her journey.

26 thoughts on “The Truth about Friendships in Your Twenties

  1. I totally agree with all of these points, I've had many friends come and go in my 20s based on circumstance. I also think as you grow and evolve your friendships naturally change anyway x


  2. Some of my oldest friends didn't even ask how my mum was doing when I told them she had cancer. I travelled back home when my mum was taken to hospital and asked to meet up before I returned home, telling I was back in their area due to my mum being diagnosed with cancer. They couldn't meet, but also never once asked about my mum's cancer or how I was doing with it. My friends on my postgraduate course however, routinely asked. Just because you've known someone for decades, you may have also gone out if your way to help them during that time, it doesn't mean they'll even care enough to ask you how you our during a personal crisis


  3. This is so true. I wish I knew this going into my twenties. It’s totally different, it’s definitely harder to make friends in your twenties as well! My very best friend I even hardly hear from. Really good post 💜


  4. I completely agree with everything you said! You grow up and outgrown many friendships as well as taking different paths, there's nothing wrong with it. Quality over quantity is real! Thank you for sharing x


  5. This was such an amazing read. This is the complete truth about friends. Number 1 is so spot on! Of a truth, not everyone that is nice to you is your friend. I believe that friends will come and go and so I don't stress myself out when someone who used to be my friend walks out. Nothing in life is permanent, people will walk in and walk out of your life and that's fine.


  6. Hard times reveal true friends – oh wow, this resonated with me. My so-called best friend, for whom I dropped everything when her father died, just didn't want to know when I lost my mother. Never was a truer phrase quoted!


  7. Omg, I felt this post from the bottom of my heart. You wrote this so beautifully. I love your “quality over quantity input. That couldn't be more true. I definitely prefer having a few best friends than a lot of friends (who might not be your true friends). I can say that I am lucky to have a best friend to who I can share anything and everything. Thank you so much for this kind of reminder.


  8. This is a really interesting article you have shared. Relationships and all friendships take time and effort and is definitely a bit of give and take. As you get older your lives go in different directions and so you have to put in that effort to make them work. Thank you for sharing your blog post. Lauren |


  9. “Not all Friendship lasts”, that hit me the hardest. Kailan lang nakita ko Yung Bestfriend ko ng G11-G12 babatiin ko Sana siya pero Wala. Lumakad lang siya sa harap ko walang eye contact, walang bati parang complete stranger kami sa isa't Isa, naiinis Sana ako pero nabasa ko tung article narealize ko tama nga Naman may point ka Hindi araw araw na puro sun's and rainbows Ang friendship, minsan kailangan nating tanggapin na habang lumilipas Ang panahon nagkakaroon na Tayo ng mga kanya kanya nating buhay . 😅


  10. Oh that's so sad 😦 perhaps, they weren't truly your friends. But the second batch of friends you mentioned are keepers. Absolutely true. Thanks for reading!


  11. Hi, Zeus! Oo nga, minsan mayroon talagang pag-aaway na magaganap pero kung totoong magkaibigan kayo, both of you will lower your pride. Thank you for reading, Zeus!


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