Remember how uncool it would have been growing up to befriend someone even just one grade lower? If that were still true, I would be considered super uncool. At 23, I have friends ranging in age from late teens to late 70s. As I’m learning though, having friends of all ages is incredible for countless reasons.
First, age gaps in friendship provide perspective. Having older friends in particular, who have been through more than we have, is reassuring. I can’t count the number of times that these friendships have reminded me of the simple fact that life goes on, that most of the issues I wrestle with are nothing in the grand scheme of things. Nothing is as bad as we think.
Second, having friends of different ages is advantageous in terms of advice. I value the thoughts of peers, but receiving wisdom from women who’ve lived through what I’m living through and who’ve had time to process the experiences is priceless.
Third, age differences between friends can provide direction, showing us both where we’ve been and where we want to go. My younger friends teach me how much I’ve grown since I was their age and my older friends teach me how much more I have left to dream and accomplish before I reach their age.
Age is truly just a number. What draws people together has less to do with having similar demographics and more to do with sharing similar spirits, and when we share laughter, inspiration, and our lives with these similar spirits of other generations, we broaden both our happiness and our worldview.
Do you have friends of different ages? What have you learned from them?
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