What Makes A True Friend

Friendship is very important. That’s one of the reasons why emotional desolation sets in when people move a lot – they don’t keep up the friendships they’ve had. 

We need family, not therapy. We need a nice family and friends. We don’t do well alone. Every time you hear about some “nut” doing something horrible to people, you always hear “he was a loner.” That’s a symptom and a disease rolled into one situation.

Life is not meant to be lived alone. We are very social beings and we need people to care about us, understand us, share the same mentality as us, and preferably, be reasonably close in age (but that’s not always necessary). The word “friendship” is very special, and I think people throw it around to include people they know and do stuff with. A good friend, however, is someone we can rely on, someone who is faithful and who is not trying to change us, dictate to us and/or manipulate us. If you have a good friend, you know they know your warts and you know theirs, but in the greater scheme, it doesn’t matter, because the essence of that person’s character is beautiful and that’s what really counts.

Finding someone who will watch your back and stand up for you, and who is loyal is one of the hardest things in the universe. There is no real friendship if there is no loyalty. You know you have a true friend when the “stuff” hits the fan and they are still standing by you.

Good friends are always supportive. When you’re in a time of sincere and reasonable need, a friend will be there wanting to help. Friends need to be reliable and keep the things you discuss private. You know you don’t have a friend if he or she has carried a tale to others of something you said or something you did. It’s truly splendid if you can carry friends throughout your lifetime, because that isn’t always possible.

Here are six ways to maintain a good friendship:

  1. Work at staying connected. Call, write, and/or visit.
  2. Root for one another, and drop the envy. Celebrate each other’s successes. Friendship is not a competition, and a real friend takes pleasure in your success.
  3. Don’t gloat, and don’t boast about things that make you feel superior.
  4. Show up for “cornerstone” events. Share in them.
  5.  Be flexible and understanding.
  6.  And finally, protect confidences.