i didn't marry my best friend...

(grab a cup of your favorite hot beverage...this is a long one!)

i didn't marry my best friend *gasp*
has anyone ever admitted to that? i have no idea.
let me explain...

what is friendship?
that word is FULL of love and kindness, raw emotion, heartbreak, illusion, deceit.
but what does it mean?

any dictionary will give you a general description of what friendship means.
according to dictionary dot com, friendship is "a person attached to another by feelings of affection or personal regard." so i guess by this definition, i did marry my "friend."

however, if you ask people what friendship means to them, you'll get a variety of answers.
why? because friendship is personal. it's a relationship with another human being that goes beyond the just "how are you" stage and delves into the intimate details of our lives.
now you may not share every intimate detail with all of your friends, but there is a percentage that you do. am i right? these few people may be considered your best friends.

when i married my husband, he wasn't my best friend. however, over the last 14 years of marriage, he has certainly become my best friend. he's the only one that i share absolutely everything with. there are no "little white lies" with him. i trust him completely with my heart. i am truly in love and love my husband as my spouse, partner in life, father of my boys, and best friend. i hope that we are transparent, and vulnerable, and accountable with one another; honest and truthful and committed to one another. i cannot imagine anyone who is married, and in love, to have another "best friend" other than their spouse.

that said, i put the question of friendship out there in the fb world to my fb friends. here are some of their responses on what it means to them...

Melinda: True friends are hard to come by and I think in your lifetime you will not have many true friends. You will have seasonal friends but not a million true friends. A true friend will be there no matter what time of the day or night. They will drop everything for you. 

Emily: I think there's different kinds of friendship. My husband is my best friend, but I also have good friends who are just different friends. We hang out, chat, joke, etc.

Samantha: friendship means loving someone without condition; desiring to spend time with someone and enjoying their company; wanting to do nice things for them and thinking of them when they aren't around; and being able to not see each other for any length of time and still feel the same about them when you see them again.

Heather: I think friendship has many different levels. I think true close friendships require a deep level of trust and honesty, being totally vulnerable with that person and accountable to them. Someone who is there for you through thick and thin, going through life with you. Equal give and take in the relationship, not always at the same time, sometimes one needs more give than take. Someone who makes me a better wife, mom, friend, Christian, who challenges my faith and walk...there are also levels of friends who you are close with, have a certain level of vulnerability and accountability with but would never open up about what is REALLY going on in your life...you sometimes have the church face with them, some call you on it some don't. Sometimes those are the relationships that take more than give. Then there are acquaintance friendships who you can talk to about stuff just not the deep stuff.

Kristina: For me, I feel like I'm finally "growing up" and my worth/value/identity is no longer in my "friends". I don't see my true friends daily or even weekly any more. Some I only see once in a great while, but there is a deep loyalty, a trust, knowing that we "get" each other and accept each other, quirks and all. My true friends could call on me day or night for help (and vice versa). We also hold each other accountable, which us another "grown up" dimension to maturing friendships.

Lilly: I agree with a lot of what has been said. I feel like I'm in the season of my life where my friendships are shrinking, but mostly because I'm able to discern those that are more genuine and equal. For a long time, I've felt like I am the only one trying, and I think I'm ready to let those go. Flakiness is also a downer. I would want a friend who gets back to me. As a mom of two littles, I understand if it takes you a couple of hours to text me back. But it's kind of hurtful to never hear back. Are my expectations too high? Or am I recognizing my own worth more? I know that my humor isn't for everyone. I'm very opinionated and a lot of people mistake that for aggression. It does make you lonely though, and I wish it weren't so. But I value the friendships I have.

Katie: I think I have differerent "types" of friends. I think it varies a lot person to person. I'm awful at having free time for friend things, but I don't consider people *less of a friend* if we don't spend time together. Wayne is certainly my best friend. we talk about everything...some people share stuff with girlfriend...I really don't. I think depending on our season and personality, we each have different needs. I read blogs about "best girl friends" who are always at each others houses and doing things together. that's great for some people, but it kinda weirds me out. I like alone time and hubby time. Maybe I don't have enough brain/emotional/mental capacity for "that kind" of friend...where someone else couldn't imagine their life without it.

Veronica: You both need to be someone who is real; honest, kind, sympathetic, loving, an ear to talk to. Have to have something in common...available and able to reciprocate might be on the list as well. There are many people that I am "friends" with but not all of these things are happening so it feels very one sided.  frown emoticonI guess maybe it's just a lot of people being friendly or just taking from the relationship and not giving.

Janise: I think its so important to remember that freinds are different for everyone. I learned when I moved to NY that I'm not good at small talk. I want to be serious most all the time and that many are not looking for that. they are looking for "fun" and fun is fine some of the time, but it just wasn't the season I was in with my friends. My fun times were gonna be spent with my children and their friends and other little ones. There is a season for everthing and I guess it depends on your season. A friend now for me is someone who does life with me, they are flexible and spontaneous. They are a friend who knows that I enjoy working together on anything that will further the kingdom of God and a deeper relationship with Christ. My closest friend works in my house with me. she loves on my children, she listens, she encourages my relationship with Todd, she speaks truth, we pray for one another, miles and time don't seperate us.

Marie: Friendship to me is when you enjoy another's company and truly care what's happening in their life...one more important thing for me is that YOU also get something back...as much as you put into the relationship. friendships are not one sided. you can't give it all away and get nothing in return. It's a two sided caring and loving concern for each other.

Dena: Being ones self, no judging, laughter, sharing, helping, being an ear.

wow! so many different responses! yet, there are certain similarities. i suppose we all just want to be loved and needed and respected. i think God places people in our lives for a reason and a season. they may or may not become our friends/besties. the world is full of interesting people...people made in the image of God. and every person you meet is a potential friend.
are you willing to open your heart and mind to that possibility? 

think on that.  


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