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Career > Her20s

Friendships Across the Miles

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at KCL chapter.

I am on a study abroad in California. 5,351 miles from London. Over 5,000 miles away from the people who know me better than I know myself. Honestly, I have not been fantastic at staying in contact. We all slip up. We are preoccupied with our own lives. Soon it has been a couple of days since you called, then a week, and soon enough, it’s been two months without calling your best friends. At twenty years old, so much can happen in two months. Three of my friends have been through a breakup, one has gotten back with the ex from that breakup, and the rest are experiencing so many highs and lows, for all of which I have been absent.

Studying abroad can be the most amazing experience. Each day you are reminded that you have made such a giant leap from normality. It has reminded me that I can survive as an individual. It has taught me to value my intelligence. There are so many positives to take from your time abroad. It fills you with pride. But, it is always going to be bittersweet… and nothing is more bitter than not speaking to the people who make your life so sweet.

Here are five ways to stay close to your besties despite the thousands of miles.

  1. FaceTime: No form of online communication can carry the sound of your friend’s laughter like FaceTime. You get the warm feeling after giggling so hard that you cannot breathe over an awful joke. FaceTime will always make you feel like you have been with them. Time differences can make finding a time to call your friends awkward, but I promise it is worth the thirty minutes of sleep loss or being five minutes late to a class.
  2. Texting: Whilst these first two are obvious, sometimes we forget to text. I am guilty of seeing a message and failing to open it for several hours. Trying to hold a conversation with frequent replies will keep you in the loop with your friends. It sucks to miss out on the little daily experiences. 
  3. Private Instagram/private story: I love to annoy my friends on my private feeds. Updating your accounts and spamming your feed is a great way to interact with all your friends at once. Although it is less personal, it is equally as effective. 
  4. Sending TikTok’s/tagging in posts: Again, this is not a direct form of communication. In true Gen-Z style, however, it lets your friends know you are thinking of them. I love when my friends tag me in videos matching our inside jokes or any weird niche content that appears to be made just for us. 
  5. Making plans: I know it is unhealthy to live for the future, but making plans and speaking about your future together can make you feel connected and relevant to their lives. They don’t have to be concrete plans, just something to look forward to. 

Finally, if you are lucky enough to have friends like mine, you know that a semester abroad could never break your bond. The point is that you have to find a way to still experience these friendships despite the miles. You are friends with people because of how you feel around one another, not because of a contract that binds you. Don’t wait until you return. No one’s life is on pause and neither are your friendships!

Marissa Goursaud is the social media manager and marketing officer for Her Campus King's College London. In her role she updates the societies socials to keep everyone informed on the latest articles written by HC KCL's wonderful writers. Marissa is 21 years old and is and currently in her final year at Kings studying English. Marissa also spent a semester abroad at UC Berkeley. She is planning to go into journalism after finishing university. Her interests include reading, listening to 70’s music, going to Harry Styles concerts, and rewatching La La Land.