Friendship Isn’t About Whom You Have Known The Longest

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“Friendship isn’t about whom you have known the longest… it’s about who came, and never left your side.”

According to researchers, out of approximately 400 friends we make in a lifetime, we can maintain only a handful. Out of an average of 396 personal relationships we form, only 33 will stand the test of time. Turns out, we are in the habit of replacing our friends unintentionally or not. In a study by sociologist Gerald Mollenhorst of Utrecht University, it was found that when it comes to your close friends, you lose about half and replace them with new ones after about seven years.

The seven-year friendship expiration date is usually caused by the changing times. Rather than personal preferences, we make friends when the opportunity arises. Moving to a new place, meeting new faces, and having bigger priorities can weaken the friendship bond over time. Although it is a strong tendency, having lasting friendships is still possible through effort and understanding.

Psychologist Dr. Michelle Callahan said that real friends accept each other’s changes. People drift apart when they assume they no longer fit in each other’s lives. She added, “Something we each need to realize is that the person can still be your friend, even though that person has changed. Stop thinking about how they were, accept them as they currently are. Try to show enthusiasm, be curious and supportive of whatever they’re doing now.

A study shows that having friends may help your life last longer, but close relationships with relatives had almost no effect on longevity. To quote Euripides: ““One loyal friend is worth ten thousand relatives.””

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