Dear Annie

Friendship fears

Dear Annie: I’m heading to college next year and am scared of making new friends. While I have don’t have trouble talking to new people or getting along with most of them, I feel like none of them will understand my weirdness the same way my high school friends do.

My parents and I moved here from a different country, and my current group feels like my family because they are the ones who taught me American mannerisms and accept me for my neuroticism and other quirks. I even talked about the fact that it took me a week to learn what “knock on wood” meant in my college essays!

How do I find a comparable group of people in college? I don’t want to go through the same thing I did in the beginning of high school, where I bounced around groups for a year before I found my “people.” — Freshman Once Again

Dear Freshman Once Again: Your concerns are understandable. Just like you found your “people” in high school, I have no doubt that you will find them once again. Now that you know what you are looking for, and because you are older and wiser, you will be able to find new friends faster.

One of the best ways to predict future behavior is to look at past behavior, and your past looks pretty good. While you had a bit of a rough start, you were able to make great friends. Focus on your success and know that you will have more in college. Your neuroticism and quirks are what make you uniquely you! And anyone who is fortunate enough to be your friend will love that about you. If we were all the same, this world would be a very boring place.

As for your high school friends, some will be your friends for life and others will go their separate ways..

Editor’s note: “Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie” is out now! Annie Lane’s debut book — featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette — is available as a paperback and e-book.