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How do you make friends in your twenties?

I think a fair amount about the fact I am going to die. It creeps up on me at the most inopportune moments: When I’m watching an episode of something, quite entertained; when I’m at the bar ordering a drink. When I’m chatting to a guy; when I’m masturbating.  When I’m trying on a t-shirt, whilst ‘do I suit this?’ ping-pongs back and forth in my head.  I like to pretend these flashes of mortality enrich these experiences, and thus push me to just ‘go for it.’ But more often than not the feeling lingers and like a child that’s full of a fear, I lack the language to calm myself down. I guess in regards to death there isn’t really any words.

I wish I could be one of those people that just glide through life, carefree and indifferent to the whirlwind of bullshit blowing past them. Those guys and girls with pretty faces, no fears and nubile bodies; they are so blissfully unaware that their looks, life and physique are finite, fallible.  Alas I am not that person; in fact, I am about as far apart from that person as possible. You’re looking at the guy who whilst having sex a few weeks ago started thinking that both of us would end in the same place at the end of our lives (the ground.) Obviously sensing my sudden disengagement, he asked if I was alright. Have you ever contemplated the mysteries of death and told someone during foreplay that you’re thinking about their one-day dead body? Don’t. It is a bit of a boner killer.

I over analyse everything and as such it triggers a chain reaction of implications and observations that leave me lugging around this irrational fear that I am not living properly. It’s not a tangible fear like I have of being trapped in an elevator or of zombies or people that wear bootcut jeans. I can’t resolve it by hugging someone or averting my eyes. I’m scared I’m not ‘doing life right’ but angry at myself for not living in a way that I deem acceptable, which then makes me want to force myself to ‘live’ harder, or in a different way, which then sees me set up roadblocks thus stopping me from living at all.

I shall illustrate with an example: Today I am currently in a sulk because I want to do something. I’d pinned today’s success on the belief I’d be meeting my friend but, like most of my plans, it was a fucking bust. Now I’m sat here contemplating why I don’t have any plans or friends with which to make plans with. ‘Go make friends’ is a sentence that leaves me feeling cold in the pit of my stomach. I’m too old to go and make friends. Too old and currently too sober. So what do I do? I’ve tried to usual methods of using social media, the way most friendships are born these days, but aforementioned irrational fears stop me following up on the plans. Meeting up with guys from apps for dates and chat with my level of awkwardness, whilst sober, is too much to handle. Not to mention it’s two weeks before payday and that kind of socialising costs money.

There are so many complications with that route anyway! Older men have asked me to meet up, I refuse because I’m worried about the sneers of judgement I’ll be victim to, or the generation gap, or the fear of someone older than my dad trying to french me. Same applies to younger guys that want to meet up. Immaturity, different life stages. I don’t want to feel like I’m babysitting. Then I could simply meet someone my own age, but I then find myself comparing myself to them, measuring my success against theirs. Every possible solution to this lack of friends problem I find I can immediately pick holes in and thus render any seemingly sound plan useless.

Ideally this is what I’d like to happen this evening: I have someone over (boy, girl, friend or someone new.) We listen to music, have drinks, get ready, venture out. Simple conversation will eventually evolve into to epic discussions about life, crossing the bridge to adulthood and eventually lead to me yelling ‘It’s Sunday night and I’m alive!’ What will actually happen? I’ll sit in a cesspool of self-pity binge eating crisps, admiring my new scented candle, insanely jealous of my flatmate’s date this evening and recounting the days when my social life wasn’t as dead as a door-nail. Normally I’d blame my current poverty status as an excuse for not being able to ‘live’ my life, but really it boils down to my lack of friends and inability to make more or bridge gaps with old ones. So if anyone would like to come and recuse me from the dumpster of dread I’m currently sitting in, let me know. I’ll be there, getting pretty existential. Circling the topic of death and pondering how to make friends as an adult.

 

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