I’ll be the first one to admit that I lost touch with a lot of my friends over the years. Sure, when me and my wife first started dating, we’d still hang out with our respective friends, but once married life kicked in, the “night out with the guys/girls” happened less and less, as we were more content to stay in and binge the latest Netflix series.
And I’m not the only one guilty of this. Many of my friends had kids, and their weekends were suddenly consumed by sports, birthday parties, play dates, and other “kid things”. Over time, we would just grow further and further apart, as our lives were going in vastly different directions.
What’s more, I travel like crazy for work, having flown over 100K miles last year alone. So when I get home on a Friday night completely spent, the last thing I want to do is head into the city to go bar hopping with my single friends, when I could slip into my warm bed and watch some TV instead before passing out.
So when this whole divorce process started, I was concerned that I was going to be single and alone, navigating my new life all by myself. Screw that!
Instead, I started sending texts to all of my friends, even ones I hadn’t talked to in years, telling them about my divorce. And my phone started blowing up, with an outpouring of support and perspective on things. It was a real eye opener, seeing that I wasn’t alone in this at all.
Honestly, it was really therapeutic being able to talk about everything instead of keeping these feelings bottled up. My friend Eric is a motivational speaker, and he gave me a 40+ minute pep talk about how great my life was going to be, and I hung up feeling absolutely amazing. When my wife came home from work, she immediately noticed the change in my behavior and asked why I was smiling. 😀
I also reconnected with a good friend from college who I hadn’t spoken to since 2005, as we had a falling out (over a girl he was dating at the time). We picked up right where we left off, meeting up for dinner a few days later and catching up on things. Now we talk almost daily. How the hell had we let 15 years go by without talking?!
As men, we tend to keep things bottled up inside, as it’s not “manly” to show emotions.. But I’m here to tell you that you shouldn’t be afraid of opening up. Your friends know you better than almost anyone, and they will step up to the plate in your time of need.
I’m beyond thankful for my circle of friends, who have shown me that there is light at the end of the tunnel, as bleak as things seem right now.