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Friendship

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Friendship is one of the most important things in anyone's life. However, friendships seem to be strongest and encouraged the most at different times and ages in a person's life; and weak and unimportant at others. However, friendship is a basic human need: the need to accepted and loved.

At the early stages of school, namely preschool and kindergarten, friendships are encouraged and cultivated. Little children are usually the most accepting of others, and friendships are easily made and kept. Later, when the children grow up and become more skeptical and need more from their friends than just sitting by them at lunchtime, friendships start to evolve and show their true colors. Teenagers may find that they just don't have anything in common anymore with people who might have been their friends since kindergarten. New friends are made, and only the test of time will tell who stood by their side while they wept, or who would leave. There's a saying that, "You don't go to school to find your husband, you go to find your bridesmaids."

When two best friends since kindergarten grow up and suddenly find that friendship is not at the top of their priority list anymore, friendships can fade. All of a sudden, friendship falls somewhere down the list between cooking for your family, working, or reading. Friendship is still encouraged by society, but adults just don't have time to sit down and call up an old friend and chat for hours about how their lives have been. A recent study found that parents of teenagers have about 4.7 friends, while retired citizens have about 6 friends. What happened to the groups of fifteen or twenty friends we all had in high school and college? Why has friendship slipped so far down the list or priorities, if all of us still value it so much? 95% of adults still say that they wish they had more close friends. What happened?

All of the humans on planet Earth have similar needs: food, water, shelter, etc., but one of the most important things on the list of human needs is acceptance. Everyone wants to feel like they belong; accepted, and loved. Of course family can provide us with all of these things, but friendships are the only time when we can test whether people actually love, accept, and want to be around us. We expect this from family; but friends don't come pre-made. Making friends is a kind of test-drive for your personality: what kind of people do you like to be around? Which types of humor do you find funny? Friendship is the type of love and acceptance that is gained and earned, not simply given unconditionally by your family.

In conclusion, friendship is a basic human need, but as we grow older and grow apart, friendship is pushed to the side. However, many of us wish that friendships were as important, and as easy, as they were in preschool and kindergarten. All it takes is a little extra effort; why can't we be friends?





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