Hard to Find

Following Friday’s (Nov. 9) post on Oyster or Marshmallow?, I promised you a “mini-series” on female friendships.  We were off and running with Monday’s post on Giving and Receiving (Nov. 12).  This series can not and is not intended to be the final – or even a thorough – word on the subject.  We’re just skimming the surface, but feel free to kindly chime in at any point.  In the meantime, here’s the next installment, Hard to Find.

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“Good friends.  Loyal and lasting, they have stood by you in good and bad, like a pair of boots you wouldn’t trade for anything—and if you didn’t have them, you’d trade almost everything to get them.  The world is a wilderness without good friends.”   

— Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott

A Good Friend: 10 Traits to Enduring Ties

 

 

You can find statistics on everything from crime, college entrance exams, GDP, retail sales, literacy, inflation, population, wage increases, and pensions.  Ditto family type and size, educational attainment, labor force participation and unemployment, occupational characteristics, family income, and poverty status.  That’s just for starters.  In fact, there seems to be a statistic on and for just about everything under the sun – if you know where to look and how.  But statistics on friendship?  Lost friends?  How to make friends?  Be a friend?  Cultivate friends?  Those are more elusive. 

Why?

 

Defining “friendship” may be elusive, like trying to nail jello to a tree.  What one person considers a “good friend” may not register with another.  And vice-versa.  Friendship Traits, qualities, and considerations may vary widely between socio-economic backgrounds, age, education, race, and a myriad of other factors.  Or do they?

 “Are you a good friend?  Is there anyone who would trade almost anything to spend time with you?” 

In their fine work, A Good Friend: 10 Traits to Enduring Ties, (http://www.amazon.com/Good-Friend-Traits-Enduring-Ties/dp/1569550581) Seattle Pacific University professors Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott contend otherwise. Certain patterns emege.  Qualities become consistent: time, dedication, confidentiality, loyalty, forgiveness, laughter, etc. 

But there seems to be a disconnect here somewhere.  Most people say they want friends.  Some even want close friends.   Dear friends.  The kind that last a lifetime.  So what about those “friendships” that don’t last.? They fade, wither, die on the vine for as many reasons as crops fail.  Why? 

 “Good friends can be hard to find.  Acquaintances.  Associates.  Partners.  Colleagues.  These are found in abundance.  Even a friend of the fair weather kind is not uncommon.  But the person worthy of being a a good friend – the kind who makes time, keeps a secret, and forgives faults—is as scarce as lemonade in the desert.”

— Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott

 

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On the docket: Toss and Trash, Who’s Got the Time, The Gift of Loneliness, Somewhere…, and Why I Don’t Do Women’s Retreats.

…. and lots more!

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