As the holidays near, reported rates of loneliness are increasing. Some psychologists say for older adults, the burden is heavier as making and maintaining friendships becomes harder. What are your thoughts on friendships while aging?

Alyeshia Hutson, Decatur, Ga.
I find that as I get older, I prefer to be alone. It’s hard to trust anyone these days. I’d rather be alone and happy than surrounded by fake, hurtful people. It also doesn’t help that I’m an introvert and only require a few people around me.

Dee Ched, Washington, D.C.
I think people are confusing acquaintances with actual friends. Sure, you can talk to new people but how superficial is the interaction? Who takes the time to hear someone’s story from birth to present, without judgment and the urge to gossip about them later? Who can you trust with your darkest secrets and feel confident they won’t betray your trust? People don’t take the time to really know someone on a deeper level these days, they just want to have superficial fun, post contrived pics on Facebook and pretend their lives are pure joy and adventure. It’s a fake image that I have no interest in engaging with.

Luleka Mitsie, Washington, D.C.
There are no friends. You just choose the people you can tolerate and those who tolerate you.

Ethan Henry, Chicago
It’s not that making friends is hard … it’s all about practicing discernment.

Jacquie Robertson, Washington, D.C.
We have learned the lesson of “fake friends.” Now we are choosy.

Compiled by Sarafina Wright

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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