1. Your greatest times are spent recovering from the greatest times.
Sure you may have danced all night, popped bottles and may lit-er-all-y not remember most nights out in college, but it’s the mornings after that you spent recapping shenanigans that will stay with you forever. Having a great arm to hold you steady as you shuffle to the nearest breakfast sandwich locale is one of the greatest luxuries in life. Laughing over blue Gatorade and watching SJP make significantly worse life choices than you did the night before are days well spent.
2. They’re there for you when you need it most.
Your friends over the past four years become your parents, boyfriends, therapists, doctors and life coaches. They’re the ones who always have an ear to listen and a bed to sleep on when you need someone to tell you everything will be OK. Life changes a lot. Your friends are the constant you need to get through the toughest times.
3. You hold each other’s trust.
One of the best things about friendship is that you’re not constantly worrying about whether or not you can trust the person. They’re there for you because they want to be there. You know your friends would never spill a secret to a soul without getting an OK first. From sharing a video of downing cheezits on the floor like the secret rogue animal that you are to the serious doubts about the direction in your life — your secrets are theirs.
4. They Keep it real.
There’s no sugar coating in true friendship. If your formal dress makes you look like Katy Perry’s after Russel Brand donated her dress to Goodwill where it marinated for a few weeks before catching your wandering eye, we’ll make it clear. On the upside, if you look flawless and ain’t need no man but are trying to get that man — because you like options — we’ll let you know how flawless you really are.
5. They’ve seen you at your worst.
Whether this refers to the semester you got a little too comfortable and stopped wearing makeup and brushing your hair, or to your Tequila-induced mental breakdown. Yes, things will get better. Yes, you can do better. No, I won’t post the picture of you crying into a stuffed unicorn on Facebook. Because we all need friends like this.
6. They’ve seen you at your best.
Not only have your college friends been around long enough to see you at your happiest version of yourself, they get to see you as you accomplish your dreams too. You grow into yourself in college. You figure out your passions and pursue them. Being able to support and encourage, to watch as your friends turn into the people they are meant to be, is truly an amazing gift. Boss b*itches only.
7. They’ve become a family.
You feel home when you’re together laughing over shared memories and creating new ones. You’re constantly keeping in contact because, as you reach adulthood, you realize that these people know things about your life that no one else could quite get. Making new friends is great but the intimacy shared with college friends transcends distance. You know that no matter what you can run — literally run — down the road to sleep in your friend’s dorm when you need to avoid drama in your life. They’ll always have an extra pillow. And you know that when you graduate you’ll always be able to drive hours just to stay with someone who will take the feeling of loneliness away when you need it most.
What we have isn’t dictated by time or conventions, there is no agenda to friendships — it’s nothing like finances or politics. Friendship is about experiencing life with people who make those experiences worthwhile. It’s about souls sifting together as they figure out what’s next. It’s about unconditional love that can’t be matched by one solid relationship. Because it’s different; it’s selfless. My college friends — my best friends — are my soulmates.