Most people have an idea of what friendhip is but do they really know the meaning of friendship? In my opinion, different people have different definitions of the term friendship depending on what they are looking for in other people. People have friends who are there for only a season or after a good time, while others get to be so lucky and have the same true friends throughout their life stages. These are the friends who become family. In the end, we all want people to choose us over everyone else under any circumstance. This should never be the case since we all have dignity which is inalienable, intrinsic and universal. We are all equal meaning our values do not decrease based on someone’s inability to see our worth. Therefore, we should not only be picky with our clothes and time, but also the people we want to be friends with.
One should not force people to be friends with them. Caring for someone is easy but making someone care about you is not so easy. If someone really cares about you they would make an effort to be there for you not only when it’s convenient to them. Everyone should be a reflection of what they would want to receive. Using other people for personal gain while pretending to be a “friend” is not good. Friendship must be based on a mutual recognition of the value of each person, and the truth of this value even in the face of opposing claims or coercive ideology. Solidarity begins as friendships among individuals. As Jozef Tischner says, “No one is an island all alone, we are bound to each other even if we do not know it.”
Friends are part of the things that make us who we are; hence the phrase, “show me your friends and I will tell you your character.” True friends who truly care for our well-being is what every one of us should aspire to have. Cutting ties with people who don’t build us is essential and one should not feel bad for putting themselves first and doing what is right for them. We should not underestimate ourselves because without our presence, someone’s life somewhere will not be complete. I for one am lucky to have two of the realest friends in my life, since I was young and until now. I appreciate them and thank God for their presence because without them I don’t really know where I would be. I cannot afford to picture my life without them in it.
Friendship is all about mutual understanding and wanting what is best for you and your friends. The quality of a true friendship is to understand and be understood. It is not about people who act true to your face, it is all about people who remain true behind your back. A real friend is one who walks in when the world walks out. Life is always better when we have people who love, care and support us through thick and thin- FRIENDS.
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Written by Alice Oddotte, a current Batch 2 2018 intern at the WYA Africa regional office.