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The Groves Scriptor

The Groves Scriptor

The Groves Scriptor

The friendship recession at Groves

Piper Meloche
Good friends, senior Sofia Audet-AbdulNour and sophomore Charlisa Penzak, in Boston for a debate tournament.

If you have Gen X parents, it’s likely you’ve heard “Back in my day…” followed by the most Luddite scenario that has ever graced your consciousness. 

“Back in my day, we looked up from our phones when we wanted to hang out with our friends.”

“Back in my day, we had to call our friends on the phone when we wanted to hang out.”

“Back in my day, we’d walk around for hours for fun.”

But are our parents’ views exaggerations? Or are they reflective of a greater cultural shift that has since received little coverage? According to a 2023 NPR article, Americans aged 15-24 had 70% less social interaction with friends. Simultaneously, only 31% of Americans report being single, meaning that while friendships have taken a nosedive, romantic relationships have kept pace with their track record.

There are way more songs about romantic love than there are about platonic love. But why? Aren’t friendships more multitudinous than romantic relationships? Do pet names, grand gestures, and reserved methods of touch outweigh years of established connection? According to Groves students, no!

“Maybe it’ll change when I’m an adult and I’m married. But as [for] where I am at right now, I think it’s friends over significant others,” sophomore Saanvi Lasser said. According to an NPR article, 53% of Americans have between one and four close friends; Groves students cherish their close friends to the point of domesticity.

“You have a test to study for. I know I also have a test to study for. Let’s sit in the library in silence together,” senior Erika Sharafeddin-Rice said. While it’s true that people might have fewer friends now, it’s also true that Americans have more close friends than friends altogether. It’s not difficult for Groves students to open up to their close friends.

In other words, “Quality is more important than quantity,” Lasser said. However, some people believe that you should prioritize significant others over best friends—and for good reason.

“If you’ve been dating someone for a month in high school and you’re prioritizing making plans with them over being with your friends, that’s not great. But I also think that if you’ve been with someone for a long time and you’re making a life with someone, then I think it’s expected that you prioritize that relationship to an extent,” Sharafeddin-Rice said.

Another big commitment that many friends face is the treacherous trap of paying everywhere you go. It’s difficult to get together without spending money. Whether it’s grabbing boba, a pottery date, or even just driving around aimlessly, hanging out costs money. The monetization of third spaces— places to exist outside of work and home—has ruined the ability to hang out. 

“If we go out somewhere, then it’s probably… like 20 bucks or something. The total per person is really expensive,” senior Riley McDonald said. Regardless of how you hang out, sometimes the other person’s company is all you need to maintain a friendship.

“I always try to spend at least some part of my day talking to them, whether it’s in-person or online,” McDonald said.

Are friendships nowadays solely transactional? No. Is it reportedly difficult for many people to open up to each other? No. Should romantic relationships be prioritized over platonic ones? Mostly no! Luckily for us students, the “friendship recession” appears to not be a problem at Groves.

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About the Contributor
Kathryn Kubicz
Kathryn Kubicz, Reporter
Kathryn Kubicz is a senior at Groves High School whose interest lies in niche grammatical rules and media analysis. As a prospective English major, they are thrilled to be a part of the Groves Scriptor staff this year. When they are not writing editorials for the Scriptor, they’re likely to be found advocating for GWEC, writing on their Medium blog, or sipping some elaborate espresso beverage. They enjoy studying cultural diasporas and social-personality psychology. They also think folk punk is way underrated and Carmel Liburdi is a musical savant.
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