Life without friendship would be like a cake with no icing—boring and quite frankly, pretty ugly. When I think on my time as a child, I remember ever so fondly Friday night sleepovers and trips to the roller-skating rink with my very best friend. As a teenager, I remember ball games and hangouts at the mall with the closest of friends. And as a college student, I remember study sessions and rare yet oh-so-refreshing trips off campus to Panera Bread, Smoothie King, and Olive Garden (yes, yes, I like food…a lot) with people who had become more like family away from family than just friends. Each stage of life has brought new and exciting relationships into my life that I will forever cherish. But what I have found is that now that I’m a married adult with children, I crave these types of relationships more than ever. The truth is that we adults need besties/BFFs/homeboys/homegirls (I think you get my point) just as much now as we did when we were younger. Let me tell you why.
1. We need an escape every once in a while from our “spirited,” energetic children.
Yes, children are a heritage from the Lord (see Psalm 127:3) and the greatest gift we could ever receive, but let’s be honest; we could use a break here and there! Friends help us recharge so that we can be the absolute best parents for our little rug rats and, of course, the best spouses for our husbands/wives as well.
2. We need people who will overlook the dirty dishes in our sinks, the stinky diapers overflowing our trashcans, and the stains across our shirts that may or may not be “chocolate.”
We already face enough judgment from acquaintances and strangers. We need friends who will tell us that it’s okay to not be perfect. We have to be in this together, or life will completely overwhelm us.
3. We need people who need us too.
Everyone wants to feel needed. If you are a parent, then you know this feeling well, but sometimes it’s nice to be needed by adults, too. I know that for me it’s refreshing to be in a give-and-take friendship. Proverbs 27:17 even compares iron sharpening iron to friends sharpening one another. This kind of two-sided relationship makes each person better and stronger and maybe even a bit wiser than before.
4. We need people who will tell us what we don’t want to hear.
Proverbs 27:6 says, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.” The truth may hurt at times, but we all desperately need to hear it. A little bit of truth straight from a close friend could save us all from some embarrassing situations. Just watch American Idol auditions sometime and you’ll see what I mean! Seriously, who are these people’s friends, anyway?!
5. We need people who know what we’re going through.
Being an adult is just plain hard, and the innocence of childhood is long gone. We absolutely need a sturdy support system to be able to make it through the trials of adulthood. Of course, our spouses and other family members will be there for us, but friends are just an extension of that support system.
Do you see why friendship in adulthood is so necessary? Our kids aren’t the only ones who need someone to play in the dirt with in the backyard (of course, when I say dirt, I really mean sand, and when I say backyard, I really mean the beach)! I am very thankful for the “besties” in my life and hope that you have found close friends as well. After all, friendship simply makes life more full, fabulous, and fun!