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Can I not make fraaandship with you?

Why it has gotten harder for me to make new friends after I have turned 30.

brunch Updated: May 08, 2015 19:04 IST
Aastha Atray Banan

Why it has gotten harder for me to make new friends after I have turned 30.

I am easily the most friendly person I know. I put people immediately at ease and there is rarely a person I am mean, rude or aloof towards. I love meeting people and love talking nineteen to a dozen to strangers, who after an hour with me are left wondering, what exactly had they done to deserve to hear about my childhood boyfriend? But lately, I have been having a tough time making or keeping friends.

I still like people, and still am more often than not extra nice (I need to change that habit once I turn 33 at the end of this month), but it’s getting harder and harder to connect with people. Or to bother enough to take out time from my life to meet them, do drinks or coffee or long phone chats.

I just don’t have the mental space anymore, and that’s scary. Does it mean I am too rigid in my ways? Is it like "this is the way I am, and you can love it or shove it (Brunch style )? More than the time factor, it’s the inability to be judged by someone, or change myself for someone.

Okay, let me explain. I have old, old friends who know my bad habits, and I know theirs. Being friends mean we ignore the bad stuff, and think each other is lucky to have the other as a friend. We laugh when we irritate each other, and though we may lose our cool once in a while, we are okay the next time one calls. We behave moody or bitchy or chilled out or maha fun when we want to, not a second before.

But then once I went to Goa with a new friend, who had met me first on a day I was superbly energetic and at my I-am-married-but-still- so-cool best. Maybe very drunk too. Yes, I was definitely tipsy that day, singing loudly along with pop songs much after my time.

So I should have not been surprised when he expected me to drink right from breakfast to midnight, not waste my time reading, go to Cabana (yes, there is such a club in Goa, the one where the lasers pop out from. Yes, all you 30 year olds got it) and just generally be the partay girl.

Well, I couldn’t be it, and I couldn’t even pretend to be cool. So when he innocently remarked, "you’re not the girl I thought you were", I snapped, "Well, thank God for that. This is the real me." The rest of the trip was spent sulking, and a third friend who got caught in the middle of this remarked, "I am never going anywhere with these two again!"

My new friend wasn’t to blame. The young one thought I would be willing to adjust as they say. But I am beyond adjusting. This is it. I may look cool, but there are days I certainly won’t be cool. So the only friends I can have are the ones who are the same. Mostly awesome, often tiring and rigid. So can we do fraaandhsip now?
Aastha Atray Banan's blog, Tees Tease is about how to stop getting scared of the big Three O. After all, life after 30 is still, IF NOT MORE, fun!

Follow @ Aastha82 on Twitter

From HT Brunch, May 8
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