This is the exact age you lose friends and begin the long, slow process of dying alone

This is the exact age you lose friends and begin the long, slow process of dying alone

CultureDecember 26, 2016 By Isabelle Kohn

Maintaining a fulfilling social life is never easy, but it gets harder and harder each consecutive year you survive on this planet without succumbing to disease or packs of bloodthirsty raccoons.

The tight-knit group of friends you gallivanted around with in your late teens and early 20s tends to dissipate and fall out of touch as they start to do things like marry, reproduce and unthinkably, "move to Vermont for work." This process continues until one day, you wake up with the sudden and frightening realization that you're the last man standing and probably going to die alone.

Thankfully for you though, research has pinpointed the exact age at which you begin to lose all your friends and wither into hermetic solitude. According to a study from the Aalto University School of Science in Finland and Oxford University’s Department of Experimental Psychology, this painful process of shedding your social circle begins no later than the tender young age of 25.

Yep; you haven't even figured out how to do your taxes or that whiskey and vodka don't go in the same drink when your friends and life as you knew it start to evaporate into the ether.

Additionally, there is some gender separation in how men and women lose friends over time. From ages 25-39, both genders lose friends at around the same rate. Once that 39th year rolls around though, women start to retain more of the few friends they have left while men grow even more emo and alone. At that time, women have an average of 15 friends or close relatives, while men have 12. This trend continues well into a person's 90s, with both genders having few contacts, but women having slightly more. Guess we just love to talk! Ha ha, gender norms are so fun ...

Men who are concerned by this startling finding can take solace in the fact the answer to dying alone less is simply to become a woman. Give it a try.

However, while this study is indeed depressing, you may find some small consolation in the methodology of this study, which is actually quite questionable.

To come up with that magic friend-death number of 25, researchers analyzed call records made from cell phones within certain time periods, which ranged from a month to a full year. Assuming that calls to different numbers indicated the upkeep of certain friendships, they pulled data from the amount of social contacts each person had and the amount of time they spent talking on the phone with them.

So ... this data isn't really based on how many friends people actually have as much as it is on how many phone calls people made.

Which, as anyone born after 1985 knows, is total bullshit.

We text now, thank you very much.

Not only do we text, we abhor calling. Speaking personally here for a moment, we have at least 10 people we'd call "best friends" who we call maybe once a year, but text several times a second.

We're not losing people as friends because we're not calling them; quite the opposite in fact. We're probably keeping friends by continuing to text and DM them on Instagram as opposed to "just wanting to hear their voice every now and then."

In fact, we hate calling so much that these study results might be even be comforting; clearly as you age, you call less people. This means you can spend less time having awkward phone silences and more time stalking someone's Tumblr, which, let's be honest, is the true measure of friendship today.