People will tell you that friends are never going to love you like family. They will not be as loyal. They will not always be around forever. And usually, the people telling you this, are family.
None of it is true. In fact, friends are just as important as family, if not more so.
Friends are important. They are the people we decide we want to keep in our lives because they change us for the better, inspire us, and make us feel happy... basically, no matter what, we end up benefitting from their friendship in a positive way. They will always tell us the truth; they will always make us feel safe.
While yes, family might always be there, friends will too, as long as you let them—you can't expect to still be close with someone when you haven't talked in years. Unlike family—who you'll end up seeing one way or another, at parties and such, even without talking to them in years— with friends, there has to be an effort to keep that friendship going. But that is also what makes those friendships more rewarding, and more personal.
You get to choose who you want to put in time for; you get to decide for yourself who you trust and who you want to keep in your life. You can't pick your family, regardless of whether you get along with them or not. However, you have a say in who becomes your friend. You can find people you have things in common with, and enjoy watching your friendships build.
All in all, humans need friendships. We need to have at least one person outside of our family that we can go to with all our troubles, knowing that we won't be judged. Friends have a way of making us feel better in a way that's different than our families, and because of that, our friends will always be one of a kind.