Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Discussion 2: What are Friends For?

Yesterday, Nikki, Amber, and Hannah led us in a discussion on the essay, "What are Friends For?" We analyzed the types of friendships covered in the essay. We also tried to figure out if those types accurately reflect the friendships in our lives. We wanted to know if the essay contained generalization or truth.

Our findings? The essay is full of generalizations. However, unlike "Beauty and the Beast," these generalizations were presented in a comical tone. The tone made it easier for us to take. We laughed, instead of feeling offended.

Through talking, we also found that these generalizations can be supported with real life examples. In class, we went around the room, telling stories about friends that fit into the categories. Most specifically, we discussed three types of friends.

1. The friends with whom you grow apart, but when you get together, you can pick right back up where you left off.

2. The friends who make you feel better about yourself.

3. The friends that "nobody likes."

We found abundant examples of each. It's interesting to wonder: Why do so many of us have the same kinds of friendships? What does this say about us as people?

Perry made a really smart comment, regarding friend #2. He pointed out that it's easy to identify a friend's flaws and project them on yourself. But often, we have more in common with those flaws than we think. It's interesting to consider why we choose the friends we do. Are we looking to spend time with people who are just like us? Or do we pick friends who are nothing like us? Do we actively try to make friends? Or do friends develop organically out of chance encounters?

Tricia mused on the role that college plays on friendships. It tests the strength of relationships. Some friends go to different schools and never reunite. Others are able to get together and pick right back up, as if no time has past.

At the same time, college forces us to become friends with people who we wouldn't normally seek out. For example, our school merges "city folk" with "country folk." Being stuck on the campus together causes everyone to be much more open minded and accepting of each other's culture and past.

Personally, I regret that we didn't get to talk about one of my favorite friend categories: the FRIENEMIE!


  1. I believe many of us have the same friends because we have the same needs as people. We need to feel better about ourselves, we need people to talk to. We like to have an abundance of friends, some who are like us so we can feel comfortable and some who are different so we can try new things.

  2. Oh my gosh! How could we forget frienemies? Haha.
    My favortie part of the discussion was when Sarah talked about her hero friend. I actually started crying because I had a friend just like that who passed away last week. I did find it amusing though about how our school really does combine city and country folk.

  3. I totally forgot to mention Sarah's hero friend. That was a very moving moment in the discussion. Thanks for telling us that story, Sarah!

  4. for me to consider someone a friend we have to be able to make each other laugh and they cant be afraid to have random, loud, obnoxious moments that usually happen in public.......teehee

  5. This discussion was mildly depressing, particularly the stories of the people we are no longer friends with, or those friends who have passed away. Then again, my story didn't help to cheer things up either. >_>