16 April 2017

Sit Down with Steph || Friends & Student Budget

It's Sunday which means that I'm back with the second episode in my new series where I give thoroughly thought-through advice to questions that you have sent through to me.

"Basically, my problem is that I have a lot of friends. Every time  it's someone's birthday, we all gather money to buy a nice cake. However, it's starting to drain my personal cash. I've been wanting to buy art supplies for myself for such a long time, but I can't seem to gather enough money to do both. It doesn't seem right telling my friends that I can't contribute to birthday celebrations when they don't seem to be having any problems. I thought about getting a job, but I don't know where or how to start" - Anonymous
Firstly, I think you're very lucky to have so many friends who want you to be a part of their celebrations. That's so incredibly special. However, I can understand and fully relate to what you're going through. My friend group, in high school, used to do the same thing, which can be tolling on one's pockets. 

You want to be a part of your friends' celebrations, but at a lower cost, and you can! The answer can be found in balloons. Balloons are a boisterous, fun and light-hearted (and much cheaper) way to celebrate any occasion. You could buy a pack of balloons that you keep for the year or buy them as you need them. Find some string or ribbons lying around the house and use it to tie balloons together- ultimately making a bouquet of balloons. In the long run, this is a much cheaper alternative to cake- and it's less conventional.

Also, I've found that the most special gifts that I have received have been the thoughtful ones- rather than the more expensive ones. Make lengthy and hand-drawn cards, or a badge that you can pin to your friend exclaiming that it's their birthday, or a crown. I have no doubt that they'll find joy in either option. 
People just want to feel special on their birthdays, and things other than expensive cakes can do that too. You know your friends well, you have special memories and experiences with them. When someone's birthday arrives, put a photo in a frame with an inscription at the back and give it to them. Ultimately, these people are supposed to be your friends. They should understand.

You could make money buy possibly hosting some sort of garage sale. Get rid of the old and unwanted, and make space for the things you want- like art supplies. You could use the supplies to make cards for your friends. If you have expertise in your area of work or study, you could offer tutoring/mentor services for extra cash too.

"Have you ever need to stop being friends with someone? And how did you handle the friendship break up"- Anonymous
I truly believe that everyone out there has gone through break-ups with friends. It's inevitable. It would be unnatural to have all of the same friends from when we were 3 to when we're 30. Change is inescapable, but good.

I started at a new high school, six years ago now, where I became good friends with a girl named Ruby. From acquaintances, to friends, to good friends to best friends, we progressed through high school. We had late-night chats, snicker-filled sleep overs and laughs galore. But, as the end of high school neared, so neared the end of our friendship.

The friendship between Ruby and myself morphed as high school went on. We morphed, which ultimately caused the friendship between us to alter and change along side us. Although we were best friends at some stage, as sad as it was, we no longer benefited from being around each other- if anything, it became soul-sucking. That's how life goes. The topics that interested me as a 13 year old, were no longer interesting by 18. When we came to a fork in our road, we each went different ways.
 If a friendship with someone no loner serves you, you need to break off the ties. Sometimes, staying around someone can be worse than living without them. It's harsh...but true. The break up with Ruby was easy; It felt right and good and essential to my growth as a person. 

Breaking off a friendship can be hard, but it doesn't have to be. I eased out of things with Ruby. We always remained civil between one another. We never had any 'bad blood' which always left the doors open for a reminisce and rewind.  

But then, she unfollowed me on Instagram which hurt. It hurt like a chainsaw through the heart. But, I got over it. You'll meet new people and move on (but that doesn't mean you have to forget the memories).
Different types of people will handle situations differently. My advice to you is to trust yourself, your instinct and intuition. Try your best to end things on good terms- it'll make bumping into each other in the future more pleasant for both parties involved.

(If you want to read a poem I wrote the night I was unfollowed and that friendship virtually ended, click here)

"My best friend and I are having an argument. She thinks that after 5 years of being friends, I'm replacing her with someone else. My best friend is moving away, but it really shouldn't be a competition. I think she wants to make me jealous and replace me with another girl that she knows I don't get along with. Can you help me out, please"- Anonymous
It sounds like your friend is scared of losing you. No one likes to feel left out or forgotten, and that could be what your friend is feeling.
I think you need to pull your friend aside and have an open and honest chat with her. Explain to her that you still care about her, and want the best for her. Explain to her that you'll always be there to chat, but with her moving away, you need some stability. You also need a friend to confide to.

Your best friend could be getting close to someone she knows that you don't like out of jealousy- because she feels like you've hurt her, or, maybe your best friend genuinely gets along with this person that you don't like. You have to be open to that. Your friend is allowed to befriend people with whom you don't see eye to eye.

I have a feeling that all of this could b resolved very easily and simply; Pull your friend aside and talk. You've been best friends for 5 years- don't let that end badly because of a fight that you could look back on one day and not even remember. It's not worth losing a friend.

I've really enjoyed giving advice. Thank you to all of those who sent through emails with questions. If you have your own advice on these topics, please do offer it in the comments below. Round 3 will be back next Sunday. Till then, send through your questions to socialspying@gmail.com, and you'll be featured in the next one. Remember, your anonymity is promised. The topic is yours to decide.

Till next time-

Thanks so much for stopping by. I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it! If you're feeling up to it, follow this blog on Google Friend Connect, Bloglovin', on Instagram or Twitter. Drop me an email or a message in the Blogger Contact Form and I'll get straight back to you!

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  1. As usual, loved this post! You give some amazing advice. You should continue to do this series because I'm sure it helps a lot of people. xx Nikita

    BLOG//Jasmine Loves

    1. Thanks Nikita!

      I'm not really sure if people are enjoying this Q&A series, so I'll take (and appreciate) all the encouragement that I can get!

  2. Hey Steph! Great advice. I really love reading these posts. xoxo



    1. Thanks Bobbi!

      That makes me feel really good! I'm glad you're enjoying them!

  3. awww I like this kind of posts, in magazines they used to be my favourite pages hahaahah
    you really give great advices, and you look very mature giving them!

    I'm agree that loosing a friend can hurt, last year I was having the same problem because one of my closest friends started to live her own life, I noticed when she didn't care of me and she forgot our meetings, it hurted me, because was the first real "best friend" that I had (I never used to have a lot of friends at school, well, I could write a long post of bad "exfriends"!), we still are friends, but is not them same, it took me a lot of time to understand it, now I'm starting to accept it...
    anyways, this is life and life still goes on, and friends come and go!

    1. I also really enjoy reading these in magazines! Haha! I'm glad you're benefiting from this. I think I would consider myself quite mature- sometimes too much so for my own good.

      Sometimes, things happen in friendships that are irreparable. Things don't go back to feeling the same. It's unfortunate, but at least you've come to terms with it.

      Thanks for sharing, Cilia!

  4. I'm loving this series, Steph! You've got some really great advice and I'm sure it's helping a lot of people out.

    Losing friends can be really hard, but sometimes it's necessary. I was stuck in a friendship for years that was so toxic and unhealthy, but from the outside, it looked perfectly fine. People would be confused if I was upset with said friend or if I'd made a conscious decision not to speak to them. It got to a point where enough was enough, and I had to severe all ties. It was affecting my happiness and my self-confidence, so leaving the friendship could only be a good thing. It was difficult at first, but I'm so much better for it now!

    Olivia - The Northernist x

    1. Thanks Olivia!

      I really, really hope that it's offering some comfort to someone out there, too.

      You make a very good point when you say that sometimes, losing a friend is "necessary". It seems like you're a strong, independent person. But, you're right. Sometimes being in a relationship is worse than being out of it.

      Thanks for sharing! So glad things have worked out for the better, for you!


  5. I loved this post and I'm loving this series! You gave some pretty good advice! :)


    1. Thanks Michele!

      Hope you're well!

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. Always appreciated!



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