Wednesday, March 3, 2010

In which Shana rants about the term BFF

Best Friends Forever

How many of you have had, or currently have someone you've declared your 'best friend'?

How many best friends would you say you've had in your lifetime?

What about best friends charms? You know, the necklaces that we all shared as little girls and young women.

Now, before I start ranting about how I've had a lot of 'best friends' that were clearly not 'forever' I have to say that a lot of it has to do with how often we moved when I was a kid. Most schools I attended for a year, and then moved on. So it's not entirely my or their fault that it didn't last.

When I was 6, I didn't have a best friend, but I was invited to a birthday party for the girl down the street. I gave her a my pet monster that I bought at the bi-way around the corner.

When I was 7, I had a best friend who was a year younger than me but was smart enough to skip a grade into my class. We loved cats.

When I was 8, I had yet another best friend. She had pretty blonde hair that I wanted for myself. She was the girl who told me that you should never sleep with your underwear on, because your butt needs to breathe sometimes.

When I was 9, I again had no 'best' friend, but a few friends I played with on the playground. One was a redheaded firecracker who was always trying to take charge of things. She cast me as Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz play that we were going to do.

When I was 10, I was kind of a loner. There were a few girls I played with on the playground, but not many. And a few girls who I'd walk home from school with. None of them got along with each other. There was a girl, a few years older than me, who didn't go to my school who hated my guts. She used to follow me around on her bike while I did fliers and taunt me and threaten me. I usually just wore headphones and tried to ignore her. One day my brothers caught wind of it, and they made her life hell. She never bugged me again.

When I was 11, I encountered the girls who would be a part of my life for the next 6 years or so. My best friend was a girl who had a Hallowe'en birthday. She was not close with the girls who would fast become my friends later, but she was close to me. She made me promise that since I had my frist kiss before her to let her have sex before me. I'm not sure if I kept that promise, since we drifted apart.

At 12, I was at a new school, was with some of the same girls from the old school. None of them were in my class, but one girl in my class did friend me. And them. There were about 8-10 of us, and we all traded off who was best friends with who. We shared BFF necklaces, and it was wonderful. Except that I came to hate them, and they didn't much care for me, but we were all comfortable with each other.

When I was about 15, I became quite close (or so I thought) with the most amazing girl ever. She'd been a cheerleader, and actress, and didn't think I was a retard for liking anime and manga. She liked metal as much as I did, and wasn't critical of my desire to wear nothing but black. I always thought that she and I instantly clicked, and I counted her as my best friend. I don't know if I was the only one who thought of our friendship like that, but I do know I had an argument with a common friend (enemy) who told me that she didn't give a damn about me at all. I'm fairly certain he was lying, but it was enough to plant enough doubt in whether or not I was HER best friend while she was mine.

When I was 17, I started talking to a girl I knew when I was a kid. We were older now, but we clicked. She didn't quite get me. Wasn't a fan of me in black, and didn't understand my fascination with anime, manga, computer games, or Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but she still seemed to make an effort to be my friend. Her boyfriend bought us best friends necklaces... it had a fairy charm and the bff charm. I've since lost the bff charm. She and I fell out and got back together more often than Hollywood starlets change their hair extensions. Until we eventually drifted far enough apart to never talk again.

Needless to say I don't have the best of impressions when it comes to declaring someone my Best Friend Forever.

I currently don't have a 'bff'. I have a number of friends, many of whom I declare the 'bestest friends I've ever had' but I'm afraid to go further and say that they're straight up my BFFs. Long story short, I love the friends (irl or digital) I currently have, and don't want them to ever go away... and I don't want to curse it, or give them the kiss of death.

As I tweeted earlier this week... I feel the most loved and supported that I ever have in my life. Mostly thanks to the internet, because it brought most of my friends (irl and digital) into my life. :-)

6 comments:

Maddie said...

in all my life i had three and the last one broke my heart in october...bffs r overrated sometimes

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eva said...

my favourite part of this post was this: "She was the girl who told me that you should never sleep with your underwear on, because your butt needs to breathe sometimes. "
He hehe. It's true though! But it made me laugh ;)

I have a lot of amazing friends, and I feel that it would be wrong to pick one as my "best friend". I know a lot of great fun amazing people, and they're all different, and will all affect me differently.. I think the term "BFF" is too limiting. Nobody is everything to anyone, and that's good. We all have our weaknesses and strengths, stuff to share.. etc. I would say I either have a lot of BFF's or I have none.
Ps. the butt needs to breathe!!

Jacob Van De Graaff said...

I don't know you at all, but I stumbled across this post via the "Next Blog" link in the header bar and couldn't simply stay silent on the matter. I have done a lot of thinking about this same phenomenon lately, and I have discovered something about it for myself. This may not hold for you, and that's entirely acceptable, but I still feel I need to put it out there.

The notion of a "best" friend, for me, just means the one person who is closest to you and shares no other relation (i.e. boyfriend/girlfriend, relative, etc.), and even some people that do have other relationships with you. My best friends, and right now I have three (not including my girlfriend, who certainly could qualify), are all amazing people that I am truly blessed to have in my life. However, one lives two thousand miles away, one is serving a mission for the LDS church halfway across the country, and the other I hardly speak to anymore.

And these three are not the same people I considered my best friends a year ago, or two, or three. People change, and I am no exception. Paths cross, and diverge, and cross again, largely without much conscious effort on the part of those following them. The notion of a "best friend" is one that is almost guaranteed to change over time -- both the idea and the person or people that fit into it. And it's different for everyone.

So the idea of a "BFF," as opposed to a "best friend," seems quite silly to me. One should not be expected to stay closer to any one person than anyone else forever; it's just not going to happen. Even if two people never grow apart, that's no reason someone else cannot eventually grow closer.

To sum up, best friends are different for everyone, and it's important to maintain a good balance between honoring the ones you have and allowing yourself to grow into new friendships and out of old ones as your life changes.

Hopefully my comments are not unwelcome, and good luck sorting out your friendships through the rest of your life.

Shana-Marie said...

@ Maddie - That is one of the downsides to having someone so close to you. I'm sorry your heart got broken.

@ Eva - Its strange the things that wind up standing out for you years later. :-) I too have many great friends, and would hate to single any of them out, good or bad.

@ Jacob - You, my brand new internet friend, have hit the nail precisely on the head. I think you managed to sum up what is on my mine far more eloquently than I could! I greatly appreciate your comment!

Jacob Van De Graaff said...

@Shana:

Thank you; it's always nice to hear that I've done a good job of explaining myself... and that I've helped you make sense of the insane world that we're all wandering around in.