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Navigating Online Friendships

With all the sudden changes that occurred in 2020 so far, it can be safe to say that the majority of college students had no idea on how to navigate a new change of scenery and how to cope with social-distancing. Socially deprived college students were devastated all throughout the nation and are forced to depend on virtual friendships. Luckily in this day and age, social media and video chat has allowed us to navigate online connections a bit easier. In my eyes, keeping up with online friendships was both a travesty and a blessing. After moving back home to NorCal during quarantine, I was worried and afraid of how my friendships would look like; would I still be able to keep all my friends I made in college? I was devastated about missing out on the last spring quarter as that would be the last 3 months I'd have with my graduating big and senior friends. How would my relationships look if we weren’t seeing each other often? I look back on these worries now, 6 months into quarantine, and feel almost absurd about why I was even so worried.

Quarantine has shown me the friendships that truly matter and those are the ones that put in the same effort you give out. I will agree that the amount of contact with some of my friends have decreased but every chance I’m able to facetime my college best friends, has shown me a new level of gratitude and appreciation for these relationships I hold deeply in my heart. While I rely more on texting or calling my friends, sending music and video links allow me to show my friends that I’m thinking of them and help develop a deeper connection to my sisters. At the same time, COVID has created difficulties and hesitancy with in-person hangouts. In this aspect, I am finding it difficult to cope with but practicing social distancing and hanging out with a few friends in person has made these rare moments even more worth cherishing. I am still finding my way through quarantine and seeing where life takes me but my understanding of these moments to slow down and finding support with friends and family can make you feel like one less lonely girl <3

Love, Janet Ngo

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