The time honored tradition of the best friend union has definitely changed. I remember a time when you met your BFF at school or at your first job or internship. You know like how Oprah met her bestie Gayle when they worked together at a TV station when they were in their early 20’s. Ahhh, the good old days.
Now, it’s not uncommon for girls to form most to all of their friendships online. The Internet and social media are amazing at connecting us instantaneously so we don’t have to venture outside to make connections because we can do so in the comfort of our own homes and from a variety of devices.
Cell phones, iPads, laptops and tablets are now the bridge and buffer to us forming long or short term friendships. I have often heard some people say that they have formed deeper and more long-lasting bonds with people they only met online and not even connected to in person. Can any true friendship really thrive and grow fertilized only with megabytes and JPEGS? This leads me to wonder if the true art of the BFF has been lost.
There are many benefits to making and cultivating friendships online. You can have conversations about events that are happening in real time like TV show premieres, concerts, book signings (I had to include this one) and also share videos and pictures in a snap which is great, but are we focusing more on the numbers in our friend’s lists than the actual experiences we’re having together?
All of the aforementioned things are great, but there is nothing quite like actually going places and doing things offline with your BFF(s). Things as common as having sleep overs, going to mall or a party (like Taylor Swift and her squad) can’t truly be replicated online. It seems like we are using social media not only to document the things we do, but it may be taking the place of doing things with our friends.
When was the last time you picked up the phone and called your BFF and invited her over to help you pick out an outfit for a date or just to hang out and watch a movie? Texting a pic or video doesn’t count. I believe that social media is an amazing tool that helps keep us connected, but we should remember to not solely rely on it when it comes to our friendships. Humans need human interaction and that means actually being in one another’s presence and talking to each other without the aid of electronics. Science proves that we’re happier and healthier when we have sound relationships with the ones we love. A smile, laugh or hand touch is so much better in person.
What are your thoughts on this? How has social media affected your friendships? Share in the comments below.
CHALLENGE: Call a friend after you read this and make a date to hang out. No cell phones allowed during the “play date.”