Classification of Friends
On a conscious level, we rarely spend much time actually thinking about and classifying our friends. However, since I was a small child, my mother taught me to recognize and appreciate various types of friends. I have discovered that there are three different types of friends. I group them according to how well I know them and how well they know me. We encounter each type of friend everyday, whether in school, home, or at the gym. First, there are the "pest friends"- general acquaintances. Next, there are "guest friends"- social partners. Lastly, we have "best friends"- our true friends.
The first type of friend is simply an acquaintance. This means that you basically only know their name. You might not even remember what they look like if you go away for a short vacation. Usually, you meet these type of friends in school, at work, on the bus, in the gym, or anywhere else you might be. You normally would not mind having a cup of coffee
with them, but if anything else came up, you usually would have no problem parting company.
You normally don’t miss them when they are elsewhere. It is also this type of friends who give you the most amount of aggravation. Since most of the time you are placed in a position where you have to act friendly, such as school or work, you would not normally tell an acquaintance when he or she is doing something aggravating, such as tapping the fingers an a table or chewing gum
loudly. This is why I call them "pest friends."
The second category of friends I call "social partners." This is because they are closer than acquaintances, but no where near as close as a true friend. Social partners are usually acquaintances who evolve into "guest friends" through increased extracurricular activities
. You know their name, a little of what they like or dislike, a little of their family history, and usually have several things in common. As the saying
goes, "Birds of a feather flock together," so too the social partners have to have several things in common with you. No one is going to want to spend any more time than necessary with somebody completely opposite and aggravating to him. Keep in mind, though, that the biggest thing that distinguishes a "best friend" from a "guest friend" is the fact that "guess friends" usually don’t converse about anything substantial or deep, such as their innermost desires and fears.
Usually, "guest friends" toy to keep the topic of conversation happy and light. They would not open up to you how they are really feeling. They are still preoccupied with "saving face."
You still do enjoy hanging out with them. But when the going gets tough, they are not there for you.
The last type of friend is the "best friend." Normally, you know them the longest.
You probably grew up together as children. He or she knows everything about you. Likewise, you know everything about him or her. They are basically like family. You would have no problem if they spent the night at your house. You know each others quirks and habits and can always tell when there is something wrong. You would not hesitate to share your deepest feelings or thoughts with them. "A true friend will see you through when others see that you are through." A true friend has no problem correcting you when you are wrong, or being stern with you when you are out of line. Likewise, a true friend will love you like a member of his own family. He will always be there for you. They are not perfect, but at least they will always look out for you and never do anything intentionally to hurt you.
On a final note, I would like to take some time to say that we should always remember keep in mind what kind of a friend we are to other people. We are all surrounded by pest, guest, and best friends. We should always strive to be the best friends, that we can be.
Also, as the saying goes, "You can’t use your friends and have them too." We should appreciate and value all friendships that come into our lives, no matter how deep or superficial. We should always remember that all best friends started out as just acquaintances.