As kids we believe that being human is only hard because we are…well…kids. The idea is, once we are adults and can say and do what we want, being human won’t be so hard.
For your sake and mine I won’t go into all of the reasons why that belief – sadly the purest belief we have in our lives – is so very untrue. But I will talk about the evolution of one aspect of that belief: That friendships get easier as we get older and most, if not all social anxiety disappears. No more bullies, no more intimidating conversations, no more fake friendships. At some point we’re all supposed to grow up and leave all of those shenanigans behind us.
Making friends never gets easier and just when you think you are all “set” and have all the friends you need, something happens and it’s time to make some new friends.
In my case I just started a new job and am forced to be social with a crew of people that I not only don’t know at all but who have all worked together for quite some time. I have reverted back to the same blushing 12 year old girl approaching the lunch table full of chatty girls, hoping whatever pops out of my mouth is at least coherent and hopefully funny enough to snag me a seat and join in on the fun.
The difference is, as an adult we know this feeling passes and we will in fact make friends. More importantly we (hopefully) have better instincts now and even though the bullies and the fake friends still exist we know better how to avoid them.
So I guess what I am trying to say in response to J’s post on social awkwardness, is that on week 2 of my new job I would gladly welcome a furry friend to help sniff out some new friends and easy topics of conversation to speed up the process. You can only say “Wow, really feels like winter out there!” so often in one day…