In my personal experience, friendships have become surface-level. Developing and maintaining meaningful connections has become less of a priority than posting us at brunch or vacation on social media. I've been invited to multiple birthday trips and dinners without really knowing
the birthday person. We were close in childhood or college
, but now, not so much. Within the past year, we never touched based on how their family is, how they like their new job, or even where their mental health is ... just a few heart eyes in the DMs and interactions in a group chat that's struggling to stay alive. Yet, I was expected to blow a bag on birthday festivities. I respectfully declined; one, because of finances and two, because I needed to learn about those individuals again. If you're ever in a situation like mine, speak your truth politely. Say you can't afford the trip, but you still want to make the season memorable for them by paying for dinner or drinks. Then, when you both link up, start to rebuild the friendship. As you're growing the relationship, remember to save money for next year. It could all be so easy if both parties are level-headed and in the relationship for the long run.