Adulting Diaries: Handling Friendships

Hey 20 Somethings,

So, let’s be real…Friendships in your twenties are hard! Its a crazy time in our lives where suddenly, we are responsible for ourselves and our own wellbeing, we’re trying to excel and move forward in our careers, we’re adjusting to this whole adulting thing, we’re trying to handle our finances and trying not to go bankrupt before our lives even start…the list goes on and on. So you might find that during this period of time, you might struggle to hold onto the friends you have left.

My little brother always makes fun of me because I have so little friends. I always have to remind him that when I was in High school, I had LOADS of friends, but life after high school is a different story; people start studying, people move away or you guys grow apart- life happens. 

Besides all the craziness of adulthood, you might still be dating as well, that’s another thing you need to balance with your friendships. It almost feels impossible!

I’m extremely busy, at the moment, Im working two jobs and training for a third job and will possibly be taking on a fourth job in the second half of the year. I live with my boyfriend and a roommate, and still try to have a reasonably healthy social life by going out and doing things people my age should be doing. It’s also hard, because as a performer, my hours are often opposite to the people in my life. 

Luckily, my friends understand my lifestyle. I’m the friend who isn’t going to message you everyday and check up on you. If you text me, I’ll reply immediately but the conversation will be short because I’m messaging you in between running from one thing to the next BUT, they all know, if they need me – I’ll be there. I’ll clear my schedule and make time for them, no matter what.

I try to keep my friendships going strong because my friends are my sisters and the family members I never had. ( I come from quite a small family and I don’t know half of my cousins. And I never had a sister.) So these are the few friendship rules I’ve come up with for myself:

  1. Check on your Friends: I try to check in with my friends at least once a week. Whether it’s in a group chat and I can check on them all at once, or if I see a worrying tweet from them and I message them privately. Even if it’s just a quick “Hi, Hope you’re good! Miss you!” It shows your friends that you are thinking of them, even when you’re extremely busy and you’re able to make some time for them. 
  2. Try to Make Plans at Least Once or Twice a Month: I make a conscious effort to make plans with my friends, I often do it as a group- like a braai or going out to dinner together. That way I get to see all my favourite people at the same time and get to spend a little bit of time with each of them individually. (Because let’s face it, life gets real busy for all of us.)  Or find ways that you and certain friends can bond over something you both like: You both enjoy working out? Go on a gym date! Both love a specific TV show? Schedule a weekly date to watch the latest episode together. – These are things you’re going to do anyways, why not include your friends when you do them?
  3. Don’t Let Your Relationship Ruin Your Friendships: This one I struggle with a lot. When I date someone, it’s often hard for me to remember to manage my time equally between work, my love and my friends. But you must!! My trick has been, making sure my boyfriend has met all of my friends and that he likes them and forms relationships with them! This way, I can have friends over while he’s there too, I can invite a girl friend over for coffee and bae is in there spilling the tea with us! It’s awesome. But always remember to check with your friends first, sometimes they just need some alone time with their friends and don’t wanna hang out with your man ALL THE TIME.
  4. Write Letters!: When I was in high school, My friends and I would write each other letters EVERY DAY! We all knew what was going on in each other’s lives because we were constantly communicating. I’m giving myself the challenge to write one letter for each of my friends this year. It serves as a recon, you can tell them about things they’ve missed out on in your life, you can open up about what’s bothering you, tell them about your goals and hopes for the future. Give them a quick update on your life, because how often do you get to tell everyone in your life everything you need to tell them? It will be good for you and for them and I honestly think it will make your friendships stronger, especially if they write back.

So those are my four goals regarding my friendships this year. 

Don’t beat yourself up if you struggle to keep your friendships alive… This adulting thing is hard. But the great news is, you’re not alone. Reach out when you feel you need help and check on the people in your life who have been too quiet lately. Everyone is going through something right now- but we don’t have to do it alone.

If you made it this far down this post, close this tab and go tell a friend you love them and miss them!

Until next time!

Nadine 

Adulting: Moving Out

What’s Up 20 Somethings!

So I know I have been terrible at posting the past few weeks, I hope you haven’t been too deprived. Remember you can also follow the blog on Instagram, where I am always posting stories about events I attend and some make up and beauty hacks – @20somethingsblog.

The reason for my absence is that I moved out of my parents home and found my own apartment. #ADULTING. It’s been a stressful time for me but also it’s been beyond amazing. I’m learning a little bit more about myself everyday.

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I started looking for an apartment at the beginning of the year, but my price range being that is was, I struggled to find a place that was comfy and homey. And can I just say how expensive it is to live in Cape Town?! It’s like they don’t want the youth to move out of their parents homes EVER! It’s ridiculous. But then at the end of June, I came across this amazing little Duplex in Claremont. And I knew the moment I walked through the front door that this was my new home. Its’s spacious, with an upstairs and a downstairs, three bedrooms! (Of course I picked the biggest one!) 

So naturally I applied for the place. And many emails later, convincing the agent that I swear I could afford the rent, my lease was approved. Then came the beginning of the pain, I had to pay a two month deposit on the place, which was a big bulk of my traveling savings, but I figured, listen if you’re gonna adult, you gotta do it right. So I parted with the money, like a big girl. Then I thought, here comes the easy part: Finding two people to move in with.

LOL.

So finding one roommate was easy enough, I work with a lovely guy named Joseph who I knew was also looking for a place, so I showed him some pictures and he agreed without even seeing the apartment. (He literally only saw it the day before we moved in.) Then I ventured into the Facebook groups, posting a witty little paragraph and some pictures of the place.

First of all, can I just say how DUMB people are. I  put ALL the information on the post; Area, how many bedrooms, if there were built in closets, parking information, rent, deposit, water and electricity and wifi. And you know what? I STILL GOT QUESTIONS ABOUT THOSE EXACT THINGS WHEN THE ANSWERS WERE RIGHT THERE!! 

I’m convinced social media has made us lazy, like just read the post man.

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So posting on Facebook obviously attracted a whole lot of strange characters. One guy offered to pay the deposit and the rent immediately if he could move in the next day when it clearly said on the post that the apartment was only available in August. He also refused to give me his current landlord’s details so I could follow up on him- which seemed really fishy. 

Eventually I found a lovely young afrikaans girl who was keen to move in and I thought everything was sorted. So I packed my bags and went to Norway and Sweden for two weeks, thinking when I arrived everything would be fine and we could move in without any issues. But then in the middle of my vacation, this girl messages me to say she found another place and is moving in that week.

And all I could think was, “This Bitch.”

So it was back to the Facebook groups hunting for a roommate. Now if anyone you know is looking for a roommate, please don’t enquire unless you’re definitely interested. I had people asking me about the place just because they were being curious. Like. This is stressful, can we not.

Eventually though, I found a lovely guy studying and teaching at UCT named Zenzo, who could pay the deposit and the rent each month and was just an all together nice guy. So yay.

What I haven’t mentioned was how many anxiety attacks I went through before moving out. The moment I mentioned that I was ready to move out to my friends and family, the jokes started streaming in; about how I’m untidy, about how I can’t cook and will starve to death, etc. Stupid stuff. And okay, it was funny the first few times, but then eventually they started making me feel like maybe I couldn’t do this. Maybe it was a mistake. Maybe I would be useless at adulting.

It sucked. I literally started crying at Fathers Day Lunch and then had a hectic cry sesh later that night when I got home with my parents.

Shame, I know they didn’t mean any harm. But it was still horrible, so a note for you, reading this, if you have a friend embarking on a life changing moment, just encourage them. I promise you. They’re stressed enough as it is, they don’t need you reminding them that they cannot do it. 

My boyfriend handled all my breakdowns like a damn pro! Every time I obsessed about how I’d do it, he just told me everything would be okay and encouraged me till I was laughing again. He really is the best. 

I couldn’t afford a moving company, the cheapest one quoted me R2000 – for a few boxes and my bed. I was just like, thanks but no thanks.

Super boyfriend got a friend to bring his bakkie and the two of them legit carried all my furniture. 

It was really great. Moving day went super smoothly, and we all got super drunk after everything was in the house.

Listen, if you ever move out, don’t expect people to come over and help you out. In adulting, it’s every man for themselves. My Mom was a huge help, she literally came over and packed my whole closet and spent the first week looking for curtains for my room.

Once I was settled in, the apartment really felt like a home, It’s so nice to have a space that is all mine! And I keep learning things about myself, like the fact that I hate dirt and stains, every time there’s a coffee stain on my counter, I wipe that shit. I also hate dishes, and trust me, they pile up. I’ve literally made time in my day dedicated to doing the damn dishes. Who am I even?

So far I’ve managed to keep my room semi-tidy. And I legit, LOVE my new room. It’s amazing. It’s perfect. 

I haven’t gotten my head around cooking yet. I’ve made some oven bake things etc. But the fact that I work nights keeps me from exploring my cooking prowess. But I’ll get there.

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Also, no one warns you how addictive and exciting furniture shopping is. My boyfriend literally has to drag me out of furniture stores because I’m always looking at things  I do not need.

Okay, this post has been waaaaay to long. I may be doing a few more adulting posts, tell me what you want me to write about in the comments! Also I’d love to hear your moving out stories!

Until Next Time,

Nadine