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  • Erika Dowell

Are you who you surround yourself with?

A question that burns into my mind nearly every time I bring up friends or meet new people.

Are they accepting? Are they going to be cool with my life? Will they look down on me, on my friends, on my friends who don’t have a voice?

I have struggled most of my life with friendships. Like my relationship with sleep, I have good times and bad times. In high school, I struggled, in college, I had too many to count. In university, it was toxic at best. As an adult, it was work and friendship and that’s a weird balance sometimes.


And now it’s hundreds or thousands of kilometers apart and sitting at home thinking ‘this would be fun to do with them.’


So how do you make friends as an adult? How do you make friends when you work from home?


How do you know that they have the same values as you, as the writing on the wall seems to be in invisible ink until a light is shone at it much too late? If someone sees me as less than due to my gender or sexuality, how do I challenge them? Do they believe what their friends believe? Do you not be friends with someone because who they are friends with?


And who am I, if I don’t have anyone?

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