by StinkyPantz 57 Replies latest jw friends

  • StinkyPantz

    The dictionary defines a friend as “a person whom one knows, likes, and trusts”. This definition seems fair enough, but at what point do you really know someone, and how much trust is needed?

    I think everyone’s ideas of what a friend should be like are broad. For me a friend is someone who:

    -shares common interests with you

    -misses you when they don’t hear from you regularly/ Someone who thinks about you when you aren’t around

    -worries about you

    -applauds your successes and it supportive when you do not succeed

    -sacrifices their time and money and sometimes sanity for you

    -can tell you your faults calmly

    -can hug you or tell you they luv ya, without it being too weird

    (All of these are vice versa. You feel these things for them and they feel them for you)

    This list could go on and on right? To me though, a true sign of friendship has to do with trust:

    *When a person has confided in you (this shows that they trust you on some level) and you can confide in them and it remains between the two of you, that is a friend*

    It seems like the other criteria I listed aren’t as necessary as this one. You have to proof you are trustworthy.

    What do you consider the defining characteristics of a friend? As a side note, can a person be your friend if you have never met in person (like on this forum)?


    I know I recently started a thread about fair-weather friends, so I guess my friend issues are obviously on my mind. . .humor me.

  • freedom96

    I think your thoughts of what is a friend is right on.

    Do I think some on this board could be considered friends, even though most of us have never met face to face? Yes.

    That being said, I also believe there are different degrees of friendships. Different friends to fill different needs.

    I have several very close friends, who I can confide in, and know that my thoughts are safe with them. They know everything about me. I have work friends, though that too is different, as I am the boss, and I must keep a degree of separation there for work reasons. I have yet another friend who is nice to see every couple of months and maybe go see a movie together. I have another friend who is very close, and we have a blast together. But, we both have families, and very demanding careers. It is tough to get together very often. Does not mean that I don't care for him as much.

    Not every friend is an equal. Does not make one better than another. Just the way it is.

  • drwtsn32

    SP: I really like your list and am hard-pressed to improve upon it.

    As a side note, can a person be your friend if you have never met in person (like on this forum)?

    First, I do agree that trustworthiness is probably the most important quality in a friend. The question is, can you really trust someone whom you have never met?

    The short answer to me is yes. I undoubtedly build trust in a person more quickly if they are physically present and I can see how they behave with other people. When I only know someone online, all I have to go off of is how they treat me. It would be easier for an online friend to misrepresent themselves, so it may take longer for me to build up trust. But I have and do trust people online and consider some of them good friends.

    I also know that just because a friend is physically present doesn't mean they won't break your trust. I have had that happen too.

    While I may be a bit guarded when developing friendships online, I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt and extend trust unless they give me a reason not to.

  • heathen

    I often think of people online as pen pals . The web is full of foney people just like the world is and to trust just on blind faith is only being ignorant of the fact that there are people who are nothing more than con artists . I would think that true friendship is derived from close intimate contact on a social level without the guise that is so easily portrayed via the internet. Fact and fiction often get confused on these mediums .

  • shotgun

    Personally I have found that adult friends come and go..sometimes I miss them but I can just as easily rely on myself.....maybe its a sign of not truly trusting many people.

    On the other hand I run into childhood friends which I have not seen in 10 to 15 yrs and after 5 minutes its like we were never apart. I thought maybe that was because as children you totally give your trust to each other and build something that seems to last longer.

  • smack

    thats me!

  • DFWnonJW

    I had a friend once.

  • Surreptitious

    There's no friend as good as a colored friend.

  • Ravyn

    a friend is someone who makes me the best person I can be when we are together and I them.


  • teejay


    I don't think that some of what you enumerated is important for true friendship to exist. For example, you said common interests.

    I don't have many friends--probably less than ten if I had to count 'em--but nearly every one I do have is quite different from me in several ways. I have found that, more important that common interests is mutual understanding and a common spirit.

    Some of my friends are passionate about golf; I hate it. They get high; I don't. They believe in the Jehovah religion; wtf? The fornificate and adulterate; I don't. Still, we remain very close out of a mutual understanding of our differences and not allowing those peripheral interests to obscure what's really important.

    You also mentioned missing someone as a sign of friendship. Yes, occasionally I think of them, but miss them? Not really. I can go for months without talking to or seeing them, then all of a sudden we either meet by accident or plan something and our friendship hasn't missed a beat. It's like we had seen each other yesterday.

    Out of respect for my definition of the word, I hesitate to call most of the folks here as friends of mine, 'tho some are for sure. I have a sense that for several others here all that remains to seal the friendship is meeting you one time... even briefly. At least on this end I feel that a serious bond of friendship is well on the way of being formed.

    The other day I heard what I thought was a pretty cool definition of "friend". That if someone called you in the middle of the night needing your help and you went, then to you they were a friend. I can truthfully say that if certain people from this board were in such a situation and called me, I'd have no problem whatsoever going out to help them (you).

    I guess it could be said that I have more friends than I realize.

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