When it comes to friendships, a lot of us tend to hang out with people in our general age range. Yet, in 2020, the stigma surrounding age gap friendships – as in, having a friend who is markedly younger or older than you – is beginning to melt away. In fact, aside from the gift of friendship, experts say that having an older friend can expand and support your mental and emotional well-being. Here are 4 great reasons to have an older friend in your life.
Older friends can help you see the truth behind stereotypes.
Younger generations often assume the lives of older people are boring. Likewise, older people may view younger generations as entitled or selfish. Yet, these are all stereotypes that can be debunked with an intergenerational friendship. Developing friendships with someone older than you has the potential to broaden your perspective when it comes to age groups and see the truth beyond stereotypes.
Older friends share valuable wisdom and insights.
Most older people have a “been there, done that” mentality – which is great for someone who hasn’t quite experienced all the ins and outs of life yet. You can bet that your older friend will have plenty to teach you about family, career, relationships, and happiness. They can even help you navigate major life issues when the need arises. After all, they’ve already experienced them!
Older friends can inspire you with their confidence.
When you’re young, you tend to be more consumed with others’ opinions of you, than you are when you’re older. For that reason, having an older friend can remind you of the importance of confidence, not caring about what others think, and dropping the need to impress. Hang around someone who’s dropped any pretenses, and you might find yourself growing more confident, too.
Older friends can provide you with different viewpoints.
Growing older usually helps to shape our opinions. It makes sense – with experience comes knowledge. Your older friends can arm you with different viewpoints that you may not have considered previously. Being exposed to the ideas of older generations offers you the chance to expand your mind in a new way and consider a previously overlooked perspective.
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