They’re such a specific brand of friends, yet you absolutely couldn’t do without them. Who else truly understands the experience of working in the office, or at customer service, or in retail at Christmas? You can rant to your partner or family all you want, but if you want a person that truly understands what you go through from 9 to 5 on a daily basis, they’re your go-to.

Truly, they’re a blessing to your life and you couldn’t do without them. BRB, just calling my shift mate now…

Who else would you roll your eyes at a customer with behind their back when you’re serving them?

Who else will clock you in when you can’t make it to a company-wide meeting? Your friend, that’s who. You know the ins and outs of their relationship drama and their toxic family, but if held at gunpoint you couldn’t tell anyone where you live. It’s that sort of situation. You know the deep stuff because you learnt it hard and fast when you were all bored between dead shifts, but you never addressed the fact that you have a sibling or a pet! Outrageous!

You can take your lunch breaks together!

It’s really great to have loyal work friends that have your back, because when you’re starting out at a new place of work it can be really bewildering and isolating. This ensures that you aren’t alone for lunch, and you can bond over the customers you had to deal with together, sharing experiences. Also, they will help you out and reassure you that you’re doing great. Indeed, if you need a little help or push, they will likely have so many shortcuts and secrets to make your life a little easier. They’ll tell you the customers to look out for and the days the boss comes in adn you have to pretend to be busy!

I mean, don’t get me wrong, your normal friends are great. But we in general just need more people that we can confide in on a daily basis. Like with all things, some friends have different purposes. Some you rant to. Others you eat with, others you shop with. Your work friends are just another category, except they tend to encompass the whole lot because all bets are off. They don’t know anyone in your life, they likely won’t meet any of them, which means you can tell them literally anything and there won’t be consequences.

But you can have intense catch-ups between breaks.

It’s a form of catharsis. Think of it like relieving emotional constipation in a very short space o f time. The five minutes beak when switching shifts, or the 15 minutes before closing when the final customer has finally left the shop. She like, really didn’t get the hint, but you can laugh about it afterwards together. 

They’ve also probably seen you at your worst too. But they don’t mind it. When you’re stressed or frazzled. Or come in five minutes late, hair a mess and in the same clothes as last night. When you’re on the brink of a breakdown or when you’re lashing out at everyone who isn’t a customer. Even those that are customers get the tail end of it. Yep, you guys see it all. but that’s how you know that they’re loyal and that your friendship, though strange, is real. 

You also will likely have a killer groupchat with these friends. It started out as a simple chat for organising shifts and covers, but soon devolved into a meme and sesh page that proved your bonds extended far beyond the storeroom. Just how you’d have it!

There are some people that are just gold dust.

But above all, even though you don’t know these people for a long amount of time, you forge intimate and life-long connections in the workplace. You can relate to your shared stresses and deadlines, but also confide in each other about more serious personal things. This is largely because, at least to start with, they aren’t a part of your personal life, but still care, so you can vent to them without fearing that they will tell anyone you know. Eventually you will just trust them with your secrets, even when they become part of your personal life.

A work friendship is truly something that no one should be without. It’s the greatest blessing to have loyal friends in different aspects of your life. I firmly believe that you can live without a lover or partner, but not a work friend that’s there for you.