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Q: My best friend’s moving away soon and I don’t know what to do. We’re really close and I don’t know how I’ll cope without her. And I’m really worried that we’ll lose touch because we’re not seeing each other every day, and I don’t want that to happen. Help!
A: Ugh, I know how you feel. My best friend moved away about a month ago now, and I was in much the same position as you. How would I cope without her every day at school? How would I make sure we stayed in touch, and didn’t just gradually drift apart? I can’t claim to be a genius on the matter, as I’ve only had a month of experience, but hopefully my advice can be of some use.
My first piece of advice would be to see her as much as possible before she leaves; it can make a lot of difference. My best friend invited me to stay at hers for two days a week or so before she moved, and we had a really great time. We watched movies, chatted about where she was moving to, she showed me her new school uniform… and we were able to spend a couple of days together, just the two of us, outside of the normal school environment that we normally see each other in, and it was great. Even if you can’t see your friend for as long as I did before she moves, make sure you do see her before she goes - or at least pick up the phone and give her a ring.
Once she leaves, it’s easy for you both to get caught up in your own, now somewhat separate lives. Your best friend will be busy trying to get used to her new home and making new friends, and you’ll be busy trying to get used to things without her. I could tell quite early on how easy it would be for my friend and I to lose touch - we’re both busy people and I knew that we’d have to put an effort in to make it not happen. So what we decided to do is that we’ve agreed a time and day every week for one of us to call the other, and have a nice long chat about what we’ve been up to the past week.
I find myself looking forward to those weekly chats, when I can hear about how her life in her new home is going, what her new friends are like, how her school is. And I tell her all of the funny things that have happened in school since she’s gone that she’s missed, and tell her the things that I’ve been up to. Oh also - side note - it’s crucial that you’re not “clingy” about your friend once she’s left. It’s great to text her and call her regularly to see what she’s been up to, but don’t get annoyed whenever she talks about her new friends, or her new school etc. She’s been placed in an environment where she knows no one, and she’s trying her best. Besides, why can’t she have more friends than just you? Trust me, it’s so much better for both of you if you’re open and accepting of the changes that have happened because of her moving away. Just because she’s made new friends doesn’t mean she automatically hates you. I promise.
Finally, I’d just say try to meet up as often as you can. I’ve been invited down to see her for a few days in Half Term, and I’m so excited. If your friend has moved really far away and it’s not possible to see her that often, just make sure you call her/skype her often and, when she ever comes to where you are to stay for a while - which she probably will - make sure you get together and see each other.
It will be hard at first, and you will miss her loads, but just do what you can to make sure you stay in touch, and after a while you’ll be used to your long distance friendship. And it means that, whenever you do see her, it will be 100 times more special, so grab every opportunity you can take. Good luck!