Friends… How many should you have

This is an interesting little piece on the BBC website about not having friends, or at least not many.

I wonder, is there societal pressure to have or to at least declare that you have groups of friends. I ask this because I have never been shy about my very small and poorly defined friendship circle. One might even call it a dot.

I have always been comfortable with my own company and have not yearned for somebody to call ‘friend’. I have what I might call friends, but isn’t even the definition of friend a subjective one. Somebody might say a friend is a person you know and spend time with, whereas another might define friend as somebody you are close with and would go out of your way to help under any circumstance, and they likewise.

So aren’t we looking less at people that have fewer friends, and more at people that have a differing definition. After all, it’s a broad world with many varying ways of thinking about it.

I have once heard of a definition of friend as somebody you may not speak to for ten years, and then out of the blue you’ll call them (or they you) and you’ll pick up on the last conversation as if it were yesterday. I personally like that definition, it really speaks to me as a kind of kindred spirit.

So do I have many friends. I have many people I share my life experiences with, and maybe go to the cinema with. Of those I have a tiny set of people that would go out of their way to help me, and I likewise for them. And then of the final definition, somebody with whom I could pick up on a conversation after ten years… Well, maybe I am being too picky.


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