'Why you need to treat your friendships like subscriptions.'

Friendships are having a moment right now. I would know, because I've written five stories on them in the past month. 

From besties and frenemies to acquaintances and strangers, people care a lot about the dynamics of their friendships and what they mean to them. 

In the past six months, the search term "How to make friends" has had a 47 per cent increase according to Google Trends

Personally, from writing in this space, I've noticed that the older we get, the more interested we are in making and sustaining friendships as adults... because it's harder to do so.

We rarely live in the same neighbourhood as our friends, we don't work with all of them, we aren't forced to see them every day like we did when we were in school. 

Watch: Friends. The final scene. Post continues below.

Video via Mamamia.

Now, we actually have to make an effort to navigate these friendships alongside the other responsibilities that come with being an adult. 

Being able to afford to go out to dinners, managing a relationship and children or taking care of parents while juggling a huge work project are all things that act as obstacles. And these friendships usually move further down the ladder as more responsibilities pop up. 

I recently saw a comment on a TikTok about friendship that really stuck with me. 


User jj.carballo said "Someone said to me that friendships should be treated like a subscription: some you want daily interactions with, sometimes monthly, quarterly, etc." 

Image source: TikTok

After reading that, I have been implementing the idea of subscribing to some of my existing friendships. Of course, the idea of subscription friendships is very topline. I'm not telling you to say to your friend "I can only see you once a month." No, that would be rude. 

The idea is to categorise your catchups with friends as subscriptions to help you maintain your friendships and stay consistent with them.

I've found that pairing your friendships with an activity that you all enjoy is the best way to implement the subscription structure. 


Do you have a friend who has a dog? Maybe you can join them on their daily walk or weekly trip to the beach?

You can start a monthly catchup with your bookworm friends to discuss your favourite reads. 

If you have a foodie friend, find a list of the best brunch spots in the area and work your way through them together every month or two. 

The subscription friendship should not be taken so literally where you've set up calendar reminders to catch up with certain friends. That's not friendship — that's work.

The idea is to create consistency with your existing friendships by doing things you both love even if it's just lying on the couch in your pyjamas watching a rom-com... 

Make it a tradition, but be flexible. 

If your friend says "hey, can we just get dinner instead?" you're both still making the time to see each other which is the whole point of the subscription.

Being in adult friendships means there are so many more schedules you need to work around just to be able to see your besties. By agreeing on a schedule whether it be weekly, monthly or even yearly, you will all not only have something to consistently look forward to, but you will also avoid that guilty feeling of realising that you haven't made time to see your best friend in months. 

If you want more culture opinions by Emily Vernem, you can follow her on Instagram @emilyvernem.

Feature image: Canva.

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