Sunday, October 14, 2007


Hi all,

After receiving a comment from James on my blog early last week (please see link), i have spent the remainder of the week researching for other factors that may influence the likelihood of someone becoming friends with another person. So far, besides findings similar to those i have already posted, i haven't been able to find much....

...So, i have decided to put it out there to all of you guys.... off the top of your head what factors do you think influence the likelihood of becoming friends with another person?? I am not asking for much detail or any research, just your own opinion would be much appreciated... and no answer will be considered wrong or stupid : )

Now, with that out of the way, here is one of the many interesting things i found this week. Below is a definition of friendship, so not one of the most interesting or exciting things i could have published, but it's gotta be done. I have changed some of the wording around, but let me know if you think that it sums up what you think friendship is:

Friendship is a term used to describe the co-operative and supportive behaviour between two or more humans. The term connotes a relationship which involves mutual knowledge, esteem, and affection. Friends will welcome each other's company and exhibit loyalty towards each other, often to the point of altruism. Their tastes will usually be similar and may converge, and they will share enjoyable activities. They will also engage in mutually helping behaviour, such as exchange of advice and the sharing of hardship. A friend is someone who may often demonstrate reciprocating and reflective behaviours. Yet for many, friendship is nothing more than the trust that someone or something will not harm them.

Value that is found in friendships is often the result of a friend demonstrating on a consistent basis:
· the tendency to desire what is best for the other,
· sympathy and empathy,
· honesty, perhaps in situations where it may be difficult for others to speak the truth and,
· mutual understanding.

This definition was retrieved from

I am not really a big fan of wikipedia normally, but i thought this definition was actually alright. I will be looking for others throughout the week, so i will keep you posted.

I will also post some of my other more interesting research findings here shortly (if i post them all now they will all be considered one large post... i have to think of contribution marks here :) ) So, i will be talking to you all again soon.

Oh, and thank you in advance to all those that leave a comment regarding my question.. much appreciated.

Good luck xx


EmDeegs said...

Hey Emma,

Just thought I would put my two cents in about what I think encourages friendship. I think there are the typical things that draw people together such as attractiveness, similar interests, SES etc, but I also tried to think of reasons that might bring people together that may not be thought of as a traditional psychological reasons.

One thought that crossed my mind is that, especially in teen years, people can sometimes become friends out of spite or rebellion. Some children hang out with the 'wrong crowd' just to get attention from their parents or to annoy them. Also, some kids may hang out with another group or person to make another friend jealous (oh to be back in primary school...).

Perhaps one example could be of people being friends with celebrities for the perks, riding on the coat tails of others. The celebrities may be obnoxious, yet these people still hang around. Is this classified as friendship? I'm not sure, but I thought I might just give you a little something to peruse for a few minutes.

Good luck with your blog.

Jacqui Hodge said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jacqui Hodge said...

Hey Emmilou,
As I consider you as a fantastic friend I thought I should comment on your friendship topic and share with you some of my thoughts :-)
First of all, your ideas for blog sound really interesting so well done.

Friendship is a really interesting phenomenon and I think that it would be perceived individually by different people. I believe that friendship is an in-depth relationship and something that grows and changes with age, emotion and experiences. Personally, I have different sorts of friendships with friends on a range of levels. For example, the friendship and close bond I share with my Mum is completely different to the friendship I share with one of my closest girlfriends. Also the friendship I share with my boyfriend is different to the friendship I share with a work colleague.

I believe that friendship requires meeting the needs of both friends. I voted for similarity on your poll. Most of the friendships I have made have been a result of a common interest or with people to whom I am similar. For example, I met most of my friends from uni as a result of sharing psychology classes with them. Most of my close girlfriends I have remained friends with from College and we will always have many memories that we will share.

Also I believe that my relationship and friendship with my boyfriend is strong because I enjoy doing the same sorts of things as he does. For example, we’re both extraverts, enjoy travelling and the outdoors, listen to the same music and have mutual friends. It can be difficult to maintain any relationship but particularly a friendship if two people have nothing to speak about, no similar interests, aspirations or any common ground.

Obviously beauty and attraction would play some sort of role in the factors that influence friendship but personally I believe that friendship develops or remains strong if two people share common interests and have similar aspirations, goals and experiences.

Hope that helps Em. See you soon

Jac :-)

ellen said...

hey Emmy-Lou,

Thought I would put in my experiences with friendships, and since you always tell me how I have to make friends with everyone i thought you might find them interesting!

Firstly, Neil mentioned in one of our lectures that usually we will seek out about six or so close friendships. I can think of right now at least ten people I would consider close friends (don't worry your one of them!). As you know I live on campus so about seven of them I see everyday and share just about everything I own with them! Also living in such close contact with them there are no secrets and they have seen me at my best and worst! And because most of their families are living a fair distance from here its where we usually turn to for support, advice as well as a good time! So I'm thinking this fits in with the proximity theory. I don't know if I would be as close to them as I am if I didn't spend as much time with them.

Others I have grown up with and have known for most my life but don't see nearly as often to me are still close friends. And although I havn't spoken to some of these people in a long time, once I do it doesn't feel as though that much time has past.

As to why I still continue to be friends with these people, well one good example I can think of is Gemma (probably who i would consider my closest friend and I think lives the furthest away). You know how she is a bit of a hippie and kind of a wild child, whenever I spend time with her I always end up pushing the boundaries of what I would usually feel comfortable doing, which I love but every time I have ever got into trouble... Gem's idea! haha anyways, maybe I stay friends with her because she helps me to experience new things and therefore I am gaining something out of the friendship. Maybe a bit of the opposites attract theory?

Anyways hope thats helpful, and as to why I am friends with you? who knows...