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Two things to check:
1) Check to see if your mic hole or area might have something covering the mic or debris in the hole.
2) If your radio has separate setting for Narrowband and Wideband channel spacing, yours may be set differently than the others.
If neither of these are the issue, your radio may need repair or replacement, as you might have a bad mic.
All gmrs radios also have frs frequencies in them. The frequencies are staggered.....1 frs....1 gmrs....1 frs....gmrs etc etc.
The only difference between frs and gmrs is power.... you are allowed to use more power on gmrs freq. So thats why they have more range. But the frequencies are right beside each other.
I would be surprised if your friends radio did not have frs channels in it also.
They should be able to communicate... most likly not on every channel but there should be some that the 2 of you share.