David Thomas and I met when we were about 5 years old. We celebrated his 26th birthday last weekend, marking roughly two decades of friendship. Once, while walking down the street, a man looked at us and said, “Ain’t it Harold and Kumar!” He was almost certainly making light of our race, but perhaps he also saw how comfortable we were with each other. The comparison fits in more ways than one since David is my oldest and closest friend.
David is an M.D.-Ph.D. student now, and I’m a science reporter. We’ve both read research on the effect friendships can have on mental health, and a study published Monday in Child Development seemed particularly relevant to us. The research suggests that bonds from adolescence might have an outsized role in a person’s mental health for years.
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