There are many things you learn about friendship as you get older. One of those things is that the exact nature of any particular friendship is changing every day. That doesn’t mean it’s getting worse, just that how you relate to another person is always in flux.
The extreme of that is friendships ending or drifting, but at the same time, new ones are starting. People go from casual friends to close friends and close friends to casual friends. None of your relationships are static. How close you feel to any one person can change depending on many different factors.
My story The Society takes place over a span of years, and since writing it has also spanned years, this one aspect of friendship was on my mind.
I love friendship. I think it’s highly discounted in favor of romantic relationships. Romance is great, but I love when friendship gets recognized as being just as, if not more, important. I cherish the thought of writing strong friendships for my characters, ones that are celebrated.
Yet at the same time, I couldn’t stay blind to the idea that friends drift from each other and make new friends over time. It always happens. Your high school friendships can remain important, but they’ll feel different after a few years than they did when you were in high school. You’re different people, and despite loving each other a lot, you’ll relate to each other in new ways.
I felt I would be doing my story a disservice if I didn’t explore that. I want Ledia, my main character, to have strong friendships, but I also want her to have the full range of how friendships change over time. Plus, she needs the ability to make new friendships along the way. Because all that is important. Embracing ways you and your friends change over time and welcoming new friends into your life is perhaps the most important aspect of friendship.