I tweeted this yesterday morning–“my best friend is engaged! so happy for her! (actually happy, not freaked out and kind of happy)”.
As soon as I posted this tweet, I started thinking, is she really my best friend? I met L when we studied abroad in England. We studied abroad through the same University (neither one of us attended said University) and were put up in a hotel near Kensington Garden for that first night. A representative from the University took us (and two others who we never really saw again) to dinner and went over boring administrative stuff along the lines of “all your grades will go to the university in PA and then you have to transfer them to your home university; don’t go into places where you feel uncomfortable (insert scary story here), blah blah blah.” After a long day of traveling and boring administrative stuff, not to mention a major time difference, L and I were exhausted and looked forward to a good night’s sleep. Imagine our surprise when we get to our room and find that, yes, it does contain two twin beds, but they are pushed together to form one big bed. Well, nice to meet you (practical) stranger, I guess we’re sleeping together…
We burrowed into bed, fell fast asleep and the next morning we boarded a train for Lancaster, England. We were pretty much inseparable during our entire semester in England, and we talk at least once a month now, often times more. But, is she my best friend? Do I have a best friend?
I’m actually not sure I’ve ever had a best friend: “A bosom friend–an intimate friend, you know–a really kindred spirit to whom I can confide my inmost soul” (Anne of Green Gables ch. VIII). All through elementary school my best friends were triplets. I never had a favorite, it depended on the day, month or year. I had a best college friend, but is she my best, best friend? Right now I count five girlfriends who are really, really close and important to me, but it seems against the rules to say I have five bosom friends. In Boston, I still have one of the aforementioned five, and several second tier friends and acquaintances, so I’m not lacking for social interaction and friendship.
But does it matter? Do you need a best friend? I’ve gotten through life just fine without a best friend. Will I someday find that person who will play that role in my life? Who will be the obvious choice for Maid of Honor at my wedding? Will my future husband be my best friend? Is that even healthy? I often wonder about people who say that. On the one hand, it seems like a great thing, to be married to your best friend, but on the other, don’t you need that kind of support and love and encouragement for growth outside of marriage? Don’t you need other relationships? But, who knows, I am certainly no expert!
I know this isn’t really boys, books or bygone times related, but I had to get it out there. What do you think? Do you have a best friend? Do you need a best friend? What do you think of significant others being your best friend?