What is friendship?

Do you call someone you hang out with a friend?  Is a flatmate, a colleague or someone who lives in your neighborhood, someone to do things with considered a friend?  Is your partner or your daughter a friend?  If you have that person as your Facebook friend, is he or she really a friend to you?

When you take a step back and ponder, perhaps none of those people that are in your life are really friends.  Your partner or children are family and can be friends if there are connections but those people you socialize with are most probably just acquaintances.

Friendship takes time to grow.  To be truly considered a friend, the other person has to also believe you are their friend too.  There is a difference between being friends and acting friendly. Someone who is a friend will introduce you as a friend to others or tell you that you are their friend.  A friend stays in touch with you during the week, either a call, text or email.  A friend is someone who has done something nice for you and who is interested when you talk about your life, someone who listens and comforts.  A true friend is not someone who is trying to compete with you or someone who constantly puts you down.  A friend is someone who is there for you when you feel the world has left you.

“A friend is one who walks in when others walk out”
-Walter Winchell

It is better to have a handful of friends then being surrounded by dozens of acquaintances.  I have come to realized that friendship made from young are the most genuine of all.  When two young children meet and connect on their first day at school, they formed a bond and often, that bond is extended through the years and even after many years of not seeing each other, when they meet up again, the bond returns.  In this aspect, social media like Facebook plays a great part in connecting people who would otherwise had lost contact.  This is only one occasion that I would consider Facebook Friend a friend, probably less than a handful of them out of a few hundred.

At times you may feel lonely even when you are out with a whole group of acquaintances.   Socializing is a form of entertainment and too much going out and about with people who are just acquaintances or casual mates may not be at all meaningful. Spending time with another whom you consider a friend is something else.  Friendship is a truly valuable gift.

Do you prefer having many casual friends or one true friend?