Having one ‘best friend’ is restricting

March 24, 2017 — by Sophia Zivanic

According to The Huffington Post, a best friend is someone who is accepting, an active listener and prioritizes the friendship.  If a best friend is such a “convenient commodity” to have, why should a person be limited to one?

Starting in elementary school, most of us unconsciously started to believe the message that we should only be allowed to have one “best friend.”

The entire concept has always been confusing to me, especially because there is a thin line between a “friend” and a “best friend.” Why have these distinct labels become so common?

Defying this rule, I always had multiple best friends. Still, throughout elementary and middle school, I was constantly told that it was “wrong” and “not OK” to have multiple “best friends.”

Since a best friend is supposed to know all of your secrets, it’s delightful to be able to converse about deep, dark, private topics to everyone in your friend group at once, instead of leaning over to your best friend to whisper it.

It is also far more polite to not whisper and exclude other people at a table.

People sometimes struggle to become friends with someone they want to get to know better because that person is always with his or her one best friend. And when “best friends” are together, there is often an invisible wall enclosing them, excluding all others and making it difficult to talk to new people.

It can be intimidating to approach a pair of best friends. The duo could be whispering and giggling to each other, making it uncomfortable and challenging for the third person to join the conversation.

Although having one best friend can be great, there are greater perks to having multiple best friends. Inside jokes get even funnier, taking a difficult class becomes a simpler task because chances are at least one of those best friends is great in that subject and there’s always someone down to get pancakes with you at 2 a.m.

Another fantastic perk is if one of your best friends leaves you for their boyfriend or girlfriend, you will always have other best friends to hang out with.

Ultimately, having one best friend is restricting and unnecessary. Maintaining an extremely close relationship with just one individual too often affects others in a negative way. People should be more open-minded to gaining a close relationship with a wide variety of friends, instead of obsessively ranking their friends and picking one to come out on top as the winner of the best friend contest.

 

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