Friends with Benefits: How many of us have them?

Photo by Dainis Graveris on Unsplash

Get your head out of the gutter!

I am talking about Friends with REAL benefits. You know, the ones that make you feel fuzzy inside because you just get each other without having to say much?

Yes! Your B.F.F., BBF4L, Bestie, you’re like two hags in a hut — yup, that person. They, too, are what I call a “friend with benefits.”

Let me explain.

How many people in your life can you call on a whim that will gladly sit through a 3-hour telephone call and yet still have more to talk about the minute you hang up?

Or who gets the right of passage to randomly call you at midnight because they’re feeling sad and need someone to help them work out a troubling matter, or even get to bombard you with memes all day and send you ugly selfies to help them examine zits on their face? Let me guess, not many. This is why this is a massive benefit to you and your life.

I understand that not many of us have this bestie, and to be honest, it’s not easy to come around. I also understand that sometimes your bestie might become defective and rapidly transition from the person you couldn’t live without to the person you can’t get rid of. But for the sake of this article, I want to talk to you about the benefit of friendship and how you can determine what *benefits package* you have with your friends.

Old friends don’t mean best friends.

Similar to a romantic relationship, friendships need to be natural. They can’t be forced because you’ve known each other since preschool.

The time you have known each other is not a prerequisite to having genuine friendship, and that’s because it is not something that can be numerically measured.

Friendship is measured by its value.

What matters is that two people are brought together based on an intangible connection that they share and have unspokenly decided to have experiences and make everlasting memories.

It’s like love, but better.

Now, I am not saying to throw away your old friends because we all know that today’s new will be tomorrow’s old. All new friends will eventually transition to become old friends, and new ones will take their place. But your old friends are gems and will always bring the stability and balance you need.

It’s important to note that great friendships don’t always emerge out of old friends.

You can achieve great relationships with new friends, and they will ultimately satisfy your need for something new and help you develop into the person you are meant to be. So unsubscribe to the “No New Friends” mantra.

Qualities of a Friend with Benefits:

1. Trust.

Without it, what do we have? Trust feels good. Trust is love. and what is higher than love? — exactly! Nothing.

There are levels to this, and it’s a LOT! And I mean a L.O.T. “Level Of Trust”.

There must be a foundation that has a high “Level of Trust.” Now the trust pie can be cut into different sizes. And what I mean is that not everyone who I trust has the same benefits package. Let agree that there’s always one friend we can trust more than the others. So when friends with a lowered trust level want more tea about my life, I am reminded that they need to upgrade that package.

Here’s the thing.

If we can’t share our innermost thoughts, dreams, and secrets with someone, we’ll never consider them a true friend — a pleasant acquaintance, sure, but not part of our inner circle.

2. Independent.

It is so essential to have an independent and confident friend who allows you to have your personal space. It is never healthy to be dependent on your friend’s company or their attention all of the time. You should both have other circles of friends and hobbies without feeling neglected when you’re not your friend’s immediate priority.

3. Listens.

Like shhh, let me talk.

A good friend listens! Like literally stop playing mom, hero, or life coach. Just listen. Your friend sometimes just needs someone to hear them, not because they want your advice.

4. Loyalty.

This is my favorite attribute of a friend. Loyalty offers you a safe haven of support, and it is closely tied to being available when you need it most. A good friend is here to support you and will go to the moon and back for you, but they will also be available when you need them.

5. Mutuality.

Reciprocity is hot! And it’s the gateway to Trust. When you download a substantial juicy part about you, it is easy for the other person to do the same. And the L.O.T. goes way up, and consequently, the friendship gets more robust.

If you keep the relationship surface-y, then the surface is what you get. Simple as that.

6. Honest.

I remember when my best friend, Harper, told me that I was her best friend. It creeped me out. I didn’t know I got upgraded.

Thoughts crossed my mind like, What if I failed as a friend? I don’t have the emotional capacity to handle the drama when things go wrong. How come I wasn’t consulted? What if I wanted to be a lazy friend and opt for the Basic Package.

Clearly, I didn’t have a choice. Harper felt it was a good friendship and put her stamp on it. To be honest, I am happy she did.

It may seem weird, but it is so important to tell your friends how significant they are to you.

If you have a Trustworthy, Independent, Supportive, Attentive, and readily Available friend, you have the foundation of a stable and healthy friendship.

The Packages:

Like you, I have had some really crappy friends. I can say over the years, I’ve been better at discerning who has good intentions to avoid dramatic and traumatic endings.

I decided after a few friendship breakups that I needed to put my friends into membership categories. Their package would equal their access to a “Level of Trust” that I was willing to provide and receive.

Why?

To be honest, I can’t really remember how I became friends with some of my closest friends. I know how we met, but it is unknown to me when the relationship became serious. Luckily these friendships have been mutually beneficial and drama-free, but there’s always a sneaky snake that finds its way in. So to avoid being conned into fake company, I categorize quickly.

Also…

Why be friends if there aren’t any benefits! Let’s be real; no one wants to feel obligated to hang out. It shouldn’t feel like a check the box activity. What’s in it for you is something to consider.

A. The Best Friend Package

Package A — 100% fulfills all qualifications. Your Soul Sister!

B. The Good Friend Package

Package B — 70- 99% — very close to being a bestie, but still shy’s away from being too personal, but the relationship is not strained because of it.

C. The Filler Friend Package

Package C- 69%- 40% — They make group pictures look great, and I can get a like on I.G. from them.

D. The Fake Friend Package

Package D- 39%-1% — The classic frenemy. She is probably gossiping about you.

E. Access Revoked.

0% — Throw that B-tch away!

Ok, I know that was a lot, but let me end with this.

When you are with a great friend, you don’t feel the need to develop a plan on what to talk about.

You don’t feel uncomfortable in moments of silence.

You are free to be yourself, and the other person brings out the positive side of you; this a priceless benefits package and should be sought out and cherished forever.

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Vanessa O.

Vanessa O.

I am a dynamic writer on how to energetically glow up your life through self-improvement, self love and energy healing practices in a practical yet funny way.