During Friendships tend to improve over the decades of

During the preschool years, friends primarily serve a child’s
interest. However, the importance of self-interest declines as the child get
older. Thus, in middle childhood, friends are seen as cooperative partners in
activities though conflict and disagreement are not easily tolerated. This
explains why fourth graders focus on their friends’ similarity and on prosocial
behaviors (Berndt & Perry, 1986). Friendships become more stable from
childhood through adolescence since conflict and disagreements become less
disruptive (Enright & Lapsley, 1981). In preadolescence, stimulating
companionship remain important while exchanging intimacies gains significance (Berndt
& Perry, 1986). However, it is not until adolescence that emotional support
and autonomy are seen as essential in friendships. Therefore, adolescents seem
to be more attentive to what their friends need than to what they offer (Papini, Sebby, & Clark, 1989). Friendships reach their
peak of functional significance during emerging adulthood (Tanner & Arnett,
2011). This is because they have much time to spend with friends as fewer
emerging adults have family obligations that comes with spouse, children, or
frail parents (Berger, 2014). Moreover, friends provide needed companionship
and critical support. As a person who is also in emerging adulthood, close
friends and I share our own personal experiences, whether they are good or bad,
and we understand and comfort each other. For example, if I am stressed with
the school, I usually call my friends to get some emotional support. People are
likely to make more friends during emerging adulthood than at any later period
(Berger, 2014). Friendships tend to improve over the decades of adulthood. As
adult grow older, the number of friends declines while the depth of friendships
deepens (English & Carstensen, 2014).

             Despite the
fact that friendships have positive benefits on social,
emotional and physical well-being, old people are less likely to go out and
make friends. Even worse, their relationships tend to decrease as they get
older. This is because of physical changes, loss, and retirement. However, old people without friends are more likely to feel isolated and lonely. In
the U.S., one in three women and one in seven men aged 65 or older lives alone.
Men usually have a harder time dealing with widowhood than women. Casual
friendships can help relieve stress and depression but one very close friend
can be even better. Just like any other age group, close friendships in late
adulthood can provides emotional support. In addition to emotional support,
friendship can help enrich a person’s physical, mental and social health and
help us adjust to changes through the rewarding and challenging times of life
(Chen, 2017).

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