8 Types of Friendships You'll Have Growing Up

8 Types of Friendships You'll Have Growing Up

Everyone in your life plays their own, special role.

Growing up, you will come across many types of friendships that shape who you are. Some of them are forever, some of them are fleeting. All of them made an impact on who you are. Here are eight people you definitely encountered during your childhood.

1. Childhood Best Friend

Everyone has someone, or a small group of people, that they grew up with. Whether they tapped you on the shoulder in line for recess and said "we're best friends now" or you met them playing a rec sport in your community, kids find other kids to cling to and grow with. These people shaped you more than you realize because they were there with you from the very beginning. The parts of them you didn't like you swore you'd never follow, and the parts of them that you did you tried to weave into your own personality.

And if you're lucky enough, sometimes you find your way back. Sometimes you catch yourself on a bus to go visit them at college for the weekend and realize that all these years later, you helped each other become the best versions of yourselves from day one. And you also have some pretty great memories of the great games of pretend you used to play.

2. The Friend You Grow Out Of

No matter how much you promise someone that you will be "Best Friends Forever!" there will always be some people you grow out of. There is no need to feel guilty for this. You are allowed to change and find the version of you that you like the best, and sometimes not everyone wants to learn to love the new version. You need to constantly test your limits and expand and challenge yourself and if your friend doesn't understand why you want to, it just means they are a part of the past you have left behind.

Of course, they will always have a special place in your heart and of course you wish you could've taken him or her with you, but you can't force anyone somewhere they don't want to be. So call them up every once in a while or catch a movie. Appreciate that they were a big part of you, but accept that you grew in two different directions and no one could've stopped it.

3. The Support Group

These are the friends that you found because of a common situation you both endured. Maybe you're looking for someone to lean on for support or you're trying to make it a little easier for people experiencing the same thing you did, a connection forms fast. These are some of the most powerful because they are rooted in emotion.

Some of the biggest fights you will have come from here because you are so similar, but some of the best, most true connected moments come from these people too. Maybe they won't last forever when one person feels they don't need the other anymore. But maybe it will always be there because you've shared so much that there's no going back.

4. Polar Opposite Surprise

When you are least looking for a friendship is when you can get struck by forming a connection with your complete opposite. Someone you never thought you would even engage in small talk with steps into your life and teaches you a lot about the life you're not living. It shows you who you aren't and opens your eyes to how similar everyone is at the core.

Not many people will understand what's even there that keeps the friendship going, and sometimes you won't even understand. But the lack of expectation makes it a comfortable and safe space to challenge who you are.

5. The One You Love

You will one, if not a few people, who transforms from someone you care about to someone you love. It usually happens quietly. You go from laughing and making jokes to having late night what-does-life-look-like-after-death talks and suddenly these people will become the best parts of you. Many of the strongest relationships are secure because there was a grounded friendship underneath it. It will never be a crime to love the people in your life, even if you start loving more than you expected.

6. Friendships of Convenience

Easily, the shakiest friendships. In a new environment, it's easy to take the first person you find and latch onto them for security so you aren't the last one trying to figure your life out. Sometimes, the people you find can turn into lifelong friends, if you're lucky. Other times, they end so quickly that you feel as though you have nothing left. When it was a friendship out of convenience, when someone benefited short-term from being friends with you, they don't care how they leave you. It hurts, but in hindsight, you learn what the warning signs look like, and you learn you deserve so much better.

7. When You Have Nothing Left

There are people that come into your life when you have no one. There are friendships you form when your view of reality has been turned upside down and you feel like you won't find people who care about you again. I have found that these grow into some of the strongest friendships. You pick them carefully after getting burned once. You devote so much energy to them because cultivating it is your main focus. And one day, the friendships you form from level 0 are the most meaningful. They gave your life light again. They saw you at your weakest points. These are special. These are life-changing.

8. Family

In the beginning, family may be nowhere near this list. While you're growing up, your family sees the worst parts of you. They see you being selfish and throwing fits and know everything about you and your past. However, with time and distance, family has a weird way of coming together. It might be a cousin you've always been fond of or your brother you swore you hated with every ounce of your being when you were fighting over the last chicken nugget at dinner twelve years ago.

Either way, if you are lucky enough to find friends in family, they endure the most because they've been there since before day one, and they've already seen it all. Nothing can phase them anymore. You keep a little bit of home in each other until they become home entirely.

As most eloquently put in "For Good" from Wicked, arguably one of the most emotion musical theater songs to grace the stage, "who can say if I've been changed for the better, but because I knew you, I have been changed for good." Everyone in your life teaches you a lesson and helps you grow. Welcome them in with open arms, even if they can't stay awhile.

Cover Image Credit: Flickr

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The Thank You My Dad Deserves

While our moms are always the heroes, our dads deserve some credit, too.

Dear Dad,

You’ve gone a really long time without being thanked. I'm not talking about thanks for things like opening the Gatorade bottle I couldn't or checking my tires when my car’s maintenance light is flashing, but rather the thanks I owe you for shaping me into the person I am today.

Thank you for teaching me what I deserve and for not letting me settle for anything less.

While the whole world was telling me I wasn’t good enough, you were there to tell me I was. Whether this was with boys, a friend, or anything else, you always built my confidence to a place I couldn’t build it to on my own. You showed me what my great qualities were and helped me feel unique. But most of all, you never let me settle for anything less than what I deserved, even when I wanted to. Without you, I wouldn’t be nearly as ambitious, outgoing or strong.

Thank you for giving me someone to make proud.

It’s hard to work hard when it’s just for myself, but so easy when it’s for you. All through school, nothing made me happier than getting a good grade back because I knew I got to come home and tell you. With everything I do, you give me a purpose.

SEE ALSO: 20 Things You Say When Calling Your Dad On The Phone

Thank you for showing me what selflessness looks like.

You are the prime example of what putting your family first looks like. If me wanting something means that you can’t get what you want, you’ll always sacrifice. From wearing the same t-shirts you’ve had since I was in elementary school so I could buy the new clothes I wanted, to not going out with your friends so you could come to my shows, you never made a decision without your family at the forefront of your mind. If there is one quality you have that I look up to you for the most, it’s your ability to completely put your needs aside and focus entirely on the wants of others.

Thank you for being the voice in the back of my head that shows me wrong from right.

Even though many of your dad-isms like “always wear a seatbelt” easily get old, whenever I’m in a situation and can’t decide if what I’m doing is right or wrong, I always can hear you in the back of my head pointing me in the right direction. While I may not boost your ego often enough by telling you you’re always right, you are.

Thank you for being real with me when nobody else will.

Being your child hasn’t always been full of happiness and encouragement, but that’s what makes you such an integral part of my life. Rather than sugarcoating things and always telling me I was the perfect child, you called me out when I was wrong. But what separates you from other dads is that instead of just knocking me down, you helped me improve. You helped me figure out my faults and stood by me every step of the way as I worked to fix them.

Most of all, thank you for showing me what a great man looks like.

I know that marriage may seem very far down the road, but I just want you to know that whoever the guy I marry is, I know he’ll be right because I have an amazing guy to compare him to. I know you’re not perfect (nobody is), but you’ve raised me in a such a way that I couldn’t imagine my kids being raised any differently. Finding a guy with your heart, drive, and generosity will be tough, but I know it will be worth it.

Dad, you’re more than just my parent, but my best friend. You’re there for me like nobody else is and I couldn’t imagine being where I am now without you.

Love you forever,

Your little girl

Cover Image Credit: Caity Callan

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Friendships Are Commitments, Too, So Start Treating Them As Such

It's important to show your friends that you care about them.


Recently, I came across a tweet from Twitter user @EFFLORESCENE that read, "I can't believe y'all took "prioritize yourself, you don't owe the world your whole soul and turned it into don't be there for your friends or loved ones and never apologize when you do wrong and stop having empathy for those around you." This complaint about society is something that has bothered me for quite some time.

It's okay to take time to yourself, it's okay to put yourself first, but if you make the commitment of being a friend to someone, it's important to care and be there for those people who are your friends. Everyone has busy lives, and your friends will understand that, but if they are constantly there for you, and you ignore them when they reach out to you, that is an unfair balance of friendship.

The best friendships are the ones where you don't have to see each other or even talk to each other every day, but you know that your bond cannot be broken even with a bit of distance. The best friendships also involve a balance. This is a balance between effort and reciprocation on both sides.

Now, I'm not saying that you should do things for your friends and always expect something in return. You should never do things for other people just for how they can return the favor. What I'm trying to say is that your friends deserve the time of day. You should always find a way to make time for them, if possible. Obviously, there are some situations where a person can't make time for anyone, even themselves, because of how busy their lives are.

Also, your friends deserve to have the time and care that they put into your friendship to be reciprocated. It's always important to be there for the people you care about, but it is even more important to take responsibility for your actions. If your friend tells you that you did something that hurt or bothered them, there is a discussion to be had. A quote I love is "when some tells you that you hurt them, you don't get to decide that you didn't." It is so important to take responsibility for how you treat your friends.

Overall, just show your friends that you care for them. It doesn't have to be in the exact same way that they show it. Everyone has their own way of showing that they care about people. As long as your intentions and the outcome of your intentions are positive, then your friendships should follow in suit.

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