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Published: Tuesday 29th of October 2013
The majority of us do not take friendship as a precious gift. We are used to ‘make friends’ since early childhood. We forget such friends rather quickly. In return, they easily forget us. One can draw a conclusion that we do not have to regret about getting out of touch because we will meet another friend soon. In reality, this is so wrong. When we are in need of a good friend, there will be very few people who will be there for us. This is not sad or unfair. This is just the way it is, and it makes friendship one of the most important relationships in the world. The help we can get from a friend in a difficult situation may be unexpected and take different forms – from saving us from trouble to listening to us and letting us ease our mind. But, besides this, what a true friendship really is?
We all need to communicate and do it a lot in the contemporary world. However, there are different types of communication. Nothing can replace spending time with a friend. Together, friends can do whatever they want. They can share what bothers them or just sit in silence. They can be actually at the same place or write emails, talk on the phone, chat in the social media, etc.
This is one of the main reasons why the notion of friendship has been a little twisted recently because we all got numerous ‘friends’ on the Internet. If a couple of decades ago all teenagers wanted to have a pen pal, and those who had one were considered to be lucky, today it is much easier to communicate with a person one has never seen. More than that, the Internet has provided us with the opportunity to be surrounded by people when we are sitting in our room alone. The very fact that we have some followers or follow someone’s life doesn’t prevent us from feeling lonely. What really matters is the quality of communication and whether it can be called companionship. If so, it is worth spending our time both on the Web and in real life.
Most people try to communicate with those who share their interests and think that they will obtain this magic sense of companionship. This seems reasonable. On the other hand, if we dig deeper we will discover that we all have something in common. Moreover, people who are exactly like us are not interesting enough. Some our traits, seen in other people’s behavior, can even make us a little embarrassed. That is why having a lot in common can be beneficial (or not) but it is definitely not the major aspect of friendship. A real friend is the one who can support us in a difficult situation, the one who can give us good advice, and who can entertain us with casual chit chat when we want to forget about our problems.
Often a friend’s support means the earth to us when we are in trouble. However, from time to time, we need something specific done. Real friends will always do everything they can. We can count on a friend’s with a home task, preparing for a party, packing for a trip, shopping for groceries, and so on. However, the situation when we need help, and a friend helps us out does not only show us whether we have friends. Such situations also show what kind of friend we are. It would be much easier if this worked as an exchange of favors: our friends help us this time, and we will help them later. In fact, one can never be sure that this particular person can help now. The circumstances can be very different, and friends might not be ready to discuss the reasons for their refusal. If we do not understand this, a seemingly simple request to help with homework can become a threat to friendship. We should neither expect our friends to help us nor provide explanations each time we hear ‘no’ as an answer. The time will come, and a real friend will explain why he or she was not able to help. If our friends are there for us in the majority of cases, there is no need to test the friendship after a rare denial.
To conclude, each person understands the importance of friendship in life differently. For some of us, this is understanding and companionship. For others, this is the sense of support and believing that a friend will come to the rescue in a difficult moment. There is an image of an ideal friend we all want to have. Such friends do not envy, offend, cause pain, pay attention to the social status, and are always there when we need them. However, we should understand that our friends are not ideal people. They make mistakes and are not always there for us. We should give them the right not to be perfect. After all, friendship is the only kind of relationship in which no one should pretend. Lies, in general, are not tolerated. Neither should we hide our true feelings behind masks and fake smiles. We can have something in common, but we don’t have to have the same opinion about everything. We can argue and criticize each other. The main points are, to tell the truth, to support one another no matter what, and to forgive our friends’ weaknesses.