As recent grads, we all have expectations of what our lives will look like. Some of what we’ve planned for rings true, but the rest? Not so much—and we just might have Friends to thank for that. As sad as it may be, we must come to terms with the fact that we are not Rachel, Monica, Phoebe, Joey, Ross or Chandler, and we will not spend the majority of our twenties lounging on a comfy orange couch (although we’ll probably be making more time for that come January 1, when all 10 seasons of the show are released on Netflix… cue the happy tears).
Presenting: “The One Where Friends Repeatedly Lied to Us”
Lie #1: Even as an unemployed actor or mediocre (to put it kindly) waitress, you will be able to live in a large two-bedroom apartment in the hottest neighborhood.
As many graduettes will tell you, the palaces featured on Friends aren’t quite representative of a typical first apartment (read: shoebox). Paying rent on an entry-level salary is a very real struggle that the Friends characters somehow seemed to avoid. Yes, they were always looking for extra ways to earn cash, but how much can you really make by donating fluids (Joey) or selling knives (Phoebe)?
Lie #2: Your friends will always be available and somewhere within a two-block radius whenever you’re looking to hang out.
This might be the saddest lie of them all. Unlike college, you probably aren’t able to spend hours of each day with your BFFs. Finding time for one another during the week can be a major challenge, especially if you live or work in different neighborhoods. The good news is you’ll value the moments you do spend together that much more. Aww.
Lie #3: You’ll know people with pet monkeys, chicks, ducks and rats.
Sure, you might have friends with cats or fish, but you probs won’t be hanging out with any farm and/or zoo animals any time soon. This also means you don’t have to worry about being attacked or humped by a monkey on a first date (we hope).
Lie #4: If and when you have kids of your own, they will demand minimal attention and disappear altogether around the age of 6.
But seriously, what happened to Ben?! Ross’s son ceased to exist in the last few seasons of the show, but anyone with nieces, nephews or a babysitting job can attest that children are a major responsibility and that they sometimes, just sometimes, get in the way of hanging out with friends.
Lie #5: Pizza will always be delivered by a super-hot girl (not to be confused with the equally hot girl who works at the copy place).
Hot delivery girls are hard to come by IRL. Ross trying (and failing) to flirt with said delivery girl? Now that seems pretty accurate.
Lie #6: You will date someone new every week, or, in Joey’s case, every day.
We hate to break it to you, but your dating life will probably pale in comparison to those of the Friends characters. You may not date a billionaire or a scientist or a celebrity, and you won’t meet someone new (let alone someone dateable!) every time you leave your apartment. There’s also a chance that you won’t marry one of your three guy friends.
Lie #7: Don’t worry if you accidentally kiss your interviewer (or scream at him, or forget his name); you will still get the job.
Oh, Rachel Green, if only we all had your charm. On the bright side, we can feel happy with ourselves every time we survive an interview without a makeout sesh. Way to set the bar high, Rach.
Lie #8: You will remain best friends with your ex after multiple messy breakups.
You can also hook up with your ex’s best friend (who happens to be another one of your best friends) and remain BFFs with both of them… JK. Yes, Ross and Rachel shared the love story of the century, and they’re the reason we ugly-cried all of seasons two through four, but that doesn’t mean that their relationship was normal. It’s totally okay if you don’t want to spend all day err day with your ex.
Lie #9: You won’t get fired for spending half of the workday at a coffee shop with your friends.
Yes, Monica got fired from a restaurant once for taking home steaks, but what about the fact that she worked three hours a day? All of the friends seemed to share the mindset that work was fairly optional. Maybe that orange couch was always available because everyone else was at the office! Mystery solved.
Lie #10: Don’t bother locking your door. Ever.
And if you somehow find yourself locked out, you should knock down the door, naturally. But really—be safe, graduettes.
Now that we’re all questioning everything we’ve ever thought to be true, we should probably mention that there is one thing that Friends actually did get right: No matter what happens with jobs, apartments, financial situations or SOs, your besties will always be there for you (and they’ll know when it’s time to whip out the Ben & Jerry’s and turn on everyone’s favorite show).