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What makes a good friend?

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It’s common to say that a good friend should be loyal or respectful because those are the first things that come to mind. Are you thinking of those qualities in terms of the friends you have now or because that is what society states makes a good friend. You’ll read it in almost any magazine or newspaper article on the subject. Not too many people actually take time to consider the qualities of their friends. The friendship just sort of happens and either lives or dies. Looking at the diversity of people in the world you’ll come to realize that in fact it is quite impossible to measure what qualities make a good friend. The peers you choose are there to answer an inadequacy in your life or validate a personality or belief.

Some people enjoy crowding themselves with copious amounts of friends. I grew up with this girl named Diana and became very close to her. After elementary school I moved to another district while Diana stayed behind. When I came back to visit I noticed that Diana had lots of friends; most of which were not even loyal or caring towards her. They made fun of her sometimes but she loved them anyway. Diana had very low self esteem coupled with a very poor relationship with her parents. I realized that Diana didn’t choose these friends for their qualities; she chose them because she needed them to fill the emotional void in her life. She needed them because she wanted to feel a part of something. This is just one of many cases where I have seen people crowding themselves with friends due to emotional inadequacies. To allow for some diversity I’d like to take a look at people who choose to have only one friend in their life.

My mother is one of those people. She regards the word “friend” as a sacred term. She has one friend, and they’ve been friends for forty-two years. She believes that it’s about feeling safe with a person. My mother is a very secure and independent woman. She has no real voids to fill in her life; however, for her having a best friend in her life is important to her growth as a person. For my mother having a good friend is vital for learning about human emotion and for building or validating character within you. But what about the people who choose to be completely bankrupt of all friends? Why might they choose this?

The Advent Encyclopedia states that hermits are men who have fled the society of their fellow-men to dwell alone in retirement. Not all of them, however, sought so complete a solitude as to avoid absolutely any intercourse with their fellows. Most remained close to inhabited places, from which they procured their food. They didn’t need anyone for support or to build their character. According to the Old Testament of the Bible, they needed only the friendship of God as it was the only one true and perfect friendship.

Life and people are always changing and evolving. People with many friends may find that he or she doesn’t need as many friends anymore. This could be due to some type of major life change or realization of self worth in the case of Diana. A person with one friend might find that having more than one friend allows for as much if not more personal growth for him or her. In other cases it is the realization that he or she requires more than just a divine relationship to fully experience life. What you may have thought made a good friend today will likely change in a few years or may change after reading this. Whatever your reasons are for the types of friendships you choose know that it is not about the best qualities that make a good friend; it’s how they complete your character.

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