The 3 Kinds of Friends Every Woman Has

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Image via Galit Breen

My college roommate, Erin, and I met exactly one week after being assigned to each other. She called, I answered, and without any formality or reservation or worries that this could possibly turn out as anything other than wonderful, we made a date.

Erin was tall and willowy. A girl from the city with a sarcastic sense of humor, stunning blue eyes, and a way about her that you could just imagine doors opening for her with ease. She played soccer (fiercely) and wore bikinis (just as fiercely).

At barely 5’1 and better described as “awkward” than “athletic”, I looked up to Erin in more ways than one. She entered situations with grace and college was no exception.

In the beginning, we’d often start our evenings at the same parties. We'd be there with our own friends doing our own things, but I loved knowing she was there. True to our natures, I’d often head to our tiny room — split down the middle only by décor — hours before she did. Before slipping into my twin, extra long bed, I’d leave her lamp on (which was nice) and sometimes accidentally lock her out (which was not so nice). Hours later, when she got “home”, we’d fall asleep talking, facing each other across the room.

She had the ridiculous habit of lying on her side holding one arm straight up in the air. She swore this was comfortable and I found it endearing. I’ve told my girls about this – passing on to them a picture that is so warmly embedded in the nooks and crannies of my heart — and after we laughed imagining this, we all decided to try it. And as it turns out, it is, indeed, quite comfortable.

When Erin and I hugged goodbye after graduation it was, like all things Erin, a fierce hug. It was also a goodbye hug. We’ve lost touch since then, but my memories of Erin remain golden.

We were friends for a – wonderful – season of our lives.

There’s a certain freedom to knowing that all friendships fall into one of these categories – and that this is okay. We have different friends for different reasons, and we are different kinds of friends to the people in our lives.

I've always loved the phrase, “friends come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime.” It strikes a chord with me when I laugh with a friend until my cheeks and my belly hurt, when I see Facebook statuses and photos of friends who I still know, just not quite as well as I used to, and even when I remember moments with friends I’ve lost touch with.

There’s a certain freedom to knowing that all friendships fall into one of these categories – and that this is okay. We have different friends for different reasons, and we are different kinds of friends to the people in our lives.

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Life Coach and Solutions Consultant with LSS Harmony Sophie Skover says, “One of the most painful things you can think is that every friendship is supposed to last a lifetime. Of course you will have some friends that fall into that category, but to be aware of the three scenarios that your friendships may fall into can be a very helpful tool to use upon your social journey.  This will take an introspective effort on your part, but can provide relief and freedom within your relationships.”

As a toast to the friends who come in — and sometimes out of — our lives, here are the three kinds of friends every woman has.

People who come into your lives for …

 

A reason,

kids on swings
Image via Galit Breen

These are the friends that teach us something about ourselves, others, or the world around us and always hold a special place in our souls no matter what role they play in our everyday. Skover says, “A friendship for a reason can link to a powerful lesson that really impacted you.  I had a beautiful friend who came into my life and taught me about what true inner beauty was. I found that lesson to be incredibly substantial, but also found it hard to keep in touch after I had learned that lesson.”

A season,

kids at the beach
Image via Galit Breen

These are the friends that see us through a specific time in our lives. A grade, a job, a mothering phase. Skover explains, “A friendship for a season can relate to a person that you may feel you were in sync with for a time, but as you grow you head in different directions. This one can be hard to face, and is worth fighting for, but when it comes down to it's okay to move forward.”

 

Or a lifetime.

kids walking
Image via Galit Breen

These are the friends that are always in your life. They're the people you call, text, or email whenever possible, and it's always the right time. Skover says, “A friendship for lifetime is obvious, you can’t shake them! The devotion that exists in those friendships is unbreakable and very clear.”

The beautiful gem within the three kinds of friendships is that they're each necessary, important, and meaningful and should be equally adored and treasured.

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The 3 Kinds of Friends Every Woman Has

Galit Breen is the bestselling author of Kindness Wins, a simple guide to teaching your child to be kind online; the TEDx Talk, “Raising a digital kid without having been one”; the online course Raise Your Digital Kid™; and the Facebook group The Savvy Parents Club. She believes you can get your child a phone and still create a grass-beneath-their-bare-feet childhood for them. Galit’s writing has been featured on The Huffington Post; The Washington Post; Buzzfeed; TIME; and more. She liv ... More

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6 comments

  1. LIZ says:

    i got close friends almost all my life, and i thank for them

  2. Andrea says:

    This is so good, Galit, and I liked how you mentioned that all friendships are valuable even if they aren’t lifelong. Sometimes I think that we see former friends in a negative light, and that’s not it at all – it’s just that we’ve changed and grown apart, and that time we spent together is just as valuable as the time we spend with our current and lifelong friends.

  3. Kirsten says:

    I have learned many things about friendships in the past year. I wish I could say that it was all a gentle, happy experience…but it did teach me some lessons.

    the women who have stood at my side and loved me in every aspect of my life are like sisters to me. They are the gift I feel like I’ve been given.

    I am reminded of the song “FOR GOOD” from Wicked often lately. I have been changed “For Good” with every interaction.

    this was really beautiful Galit, thank you sharing.

  4. sapphire78 says:

    I thnk this is true but I also believe there are friends that open your eyes to reality (not necessarily in a good way). Some friends are meant to be kept at a distance, but without them we wouldn’t be who we are today. People are placed in our path for a reason whether they are good or not, we all have a predetermined destination in life!

  5. Alison Lee says:

    Lovely, insightful post, Galit. I have made some lifetime friends, but I also treasure the ones I’ve had through reasons and seasons. They have all enriched my life in their own ways.

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