A recent study published in Psychological Science explores the question: Can adolescents remain friends forever? According to the study, friendships end because of differences and also undesirable characteristics.
The attraction between friends, is determined by how often the two people encounter each other. Classmates, coworkers and people seen regularly are those who tend to be friends. People from different backgrounds have increased social interaction when they are in close proximity, as in a college dorm. An earlier study confirmed that geographic closeness and race are better indicators of social interactions than common interests, majors, or family background.
In the current study, Florida Atlantic University Psychology Professor Brett Laursen examined how adolescent friendships end. Is it the undesirable characterists, disagreements, or both? 410 adolescents were observed in the six year study. All the friendships began in seventh grade and researchers followed the students through twelfth grade, collecting data annually.
Only one percent of the friendships lasted from seventh grade through twelfth grade. One in four were maintained into the eighth grade, and fewer than one in ten survived the transition from middle school to high school.