Advice on Why Friends are Important, Even if You're in a Relationship
Dear April Masini,
I just met the most wonderful man in the world and I want to spend every minute of the day with him! The only problem is, my friends are complaining they never see me anymore. I don't think they quite understand how happy I am with this guy and I don't get why they can't just be happy for me. I know friends are important, but doesn't everyone grow up at some point and settle down with a significant other? Isn't this a part of growing up? People say I'll always need my friends, but I just found the best one I've ever had...and I think he's all I need! Do I really need my friends now that I have the perfect man?"
Who Needs Friends When You Have Love
April Masini's Advice :
Dear Who Needs Friends When You Have Love,
No man is an island. People have the need to share their experiences. Even cavemen wrote of their experiences on the walls of their caves so that others could read them. Storytelling is an ancient art because of this need to share experience. Friendships are the quintessential relationship to satisfy this human need to hear and be heard.
Of course, it's fabulous you've found that special someone in your life, and it's understandable you want to spend as much time with him as possible. But friends are important too. Just because you have him to talk to and share your deepest desires with, what happens when he's not around? And what happens if -- I know you don't want to think about this--you break up? It could happen, and you're going to want your friends there if it does!
Reasons friendships are important:
- Stress alleviation. When we tell our stories of our experiences we relieve ourselves of the secrecy and the burden we have when we carry around memories that are painful or emotional. Each time we tell our stories, we express emotion, letting off the tension surrounding the experience we’re telling about. If you have any problems with your man, you're going to want to vent to your friends.
- Advice. When we tell stories of our experiences we’re asking for advice, and we get it. Sometimes this advice is life changing. If we don’t share our experiences with our friends, we don’t get advice. Don't you think you'll ever need guy-advice from your friends?
- Connection. Sometimes we tell each other things for no reason other than to connect with another human being. This need for connection is something we see in animals and humans.
When we have positive experiences with all of the above, we form friendships and we go back to our friends to repeat these positive experiences. The friendships make life more enjoyable, less stressful, more productive, and more humanistic.