When I first arrived in Boston last August, I had forgotten what it was like to make new friends. I had been living in New York, and I had friends from Vanderbilt and from Atlanta who were already living in the city, so I didn’t work hard to make new ones. And before that, I was in Colombia with Santiago, so I had him there as constant company.
But when I moved to Boston, I didn’t know anyone here, and the first few weeks, and even months, felt strange. They felt strange because people didn’t know me, and I didn’t know them. And making real friends takes time, lots of hours together, taking about life and nothing all at the same time, laughing about funny things, smiling together, sharing in moments, and loving this life as the days come and go.
There have been recent studies about how long it takes friendships to form, claiming that it takes about 50 hours of time together to form casual relationships, 90 hours for friends, and around 200 hours for best friends.
I feel this has been difficult for me as an introvert. Spending 100-200 hours with someone takes me a long time because I enjoy being by myself….and so it might just take months for someone to really get to know me….
But I feel that after about 6 months later in Boston, I have made real friends. I went to Barcelona with a friend from Harvard to visit another friend who we had a class with last semester. We use to have weekly breakfasts to “work on problem sets” for a class, but we normally would just talk about other things. Now we have taken a trip together and sit around talking without any particular agenda.
Finding real friends takes time, and I am thankful to have found some lifelong friends already in Boston. Life is this amazing and beautiful journey, and I am so happy to have found others who can smile and laugh through the chaos and the loveliness of the world.