In my lifetime I’ve had some amazing friendships. Every one of my friends have left a deep imprint in my life. They are the ones I reached out to in good times and in bad. For whatever reason some are in my past, I cherish the memories I shared with them and will forever be grateful for their love and friendship. The ones that are still with me are my truest friends. They were the ones that kept on holding my hand in my darkest hours. They are the ones that love me despite my faults. Here are the qualities of what a true friend means to me.
Loyalty, True friends are a rare breed of people, those who don’t live life purely for their own self-interest, but take pleasure in seeing you happy and well.
Respect, they’ll never talk about you behind your back in a malicious, negative manner. Great minds talk about ideas, average minds talk about events and small minds talk about people.
Selflessness, they don’t contact you just because they want a favor. A friendship that leaves you feeling taken for granted leaves you helpless and angry. A true friend is a huge advocate and believer in “give and take”. They’re not the kind of people who will only contact you when they have a problem and need your assistance. They will pick up the phone just to say hello. Because they care about you as a person, they will always be wondering how you’re getting on, even if you spend lots of time apart because of work and family responsibilities.
Trust and honesty, a “friend” is one of the few people who you can trust completely with everything in your life. All your pains, your secrets, what is in your heart without feeling judged. In addition to trust, honesty is a quality that is really important to me. I’ve had friends ask my opinion about important things in their lives and when I have answered honestly they’ve been hurt. Some people feel so intimidated by their “friend” that they’re unwilling to criticize them when it matters most. I feel that sometimes we need to be told the absolute truth. I would want my friends to give me honesty when I ask for it.
To be present, it’s so imperative to me to have access to each other in times of pain and happiness. I have a friend who lost her beautiful mother recently and instead of letting me in to help or just to have as a shoulder to cry on she shut me out. I persisted to be there for her, calling her and checking on her but she never really took the time to communicate with me. I realized I was not that important to her, in fact looking back there were so many things she said and did that should have clued me in to that fact. I’m a loyal person and once I love someone, it’s difficult to let go but I knew it was time to let that friendship go. There is no such thing as a one-sided friendship.
Unlike family we choose our friends. We are tied to each other in mutual love and affection. Like family, we sometimes have miscommunications and disagreements. A true friend takes time to listen, express their thoughts and forgive. Someone who can easily toss your friendship away was never really a true friend. Nevertheless I cherish and think well of all my friendships, past and present.
During my childhood, I chose friends that made me smile and feel good. They made me feel loved and wanted. I think that is what we should look for in friendships in our adult years as well. As I get older, I still have a lot of wonderful acquaintances in my life but I have become very choosy with whom I spend my time.
Friends motivate and inspire you and will hope that you will do the same for them. As I get older I choose my friends wisely; quality should always take precedence over quantity.
As I watch my little girl with her friends, I wish her the same kind of love, support and relationships that have sustained me throughout my life. Already I can tell how relevant her friends are to her. She chooses kind, sweet, loving little girlfriends. I pray she will always have the love and support of good friends.