Should We Be Looking for Great Friends Instead of Great Loves?
Whether you’re watching a film or scrolling through your Instagram feed—there’s something about finding happiness with your one true love. Adulthood often comes with a lot of emotional investment into looking for “The One” only to realise a few years down the line that not all relationships are as lovey-dovey as they make it out in the movies. The sad thing is that we end up prioritising romantic relationships, work, and other responsibilities over platonic ones. Maybe it’s time to shift that focus to the people who are actually there for us—our friends!
A lot of films depict young women trying to find true love. Their best friends are along for the ride, and play a supporting role. It seems like friends in all of these stories are a part of the scenery. But in giving less importance to friendships, the film industry tells us that we don’t have to form great bonds with people to enrich our lives because “The One” does that.
Romances may come and go but friendships are forever. You could go months (or years!) without speaking to a friend, but when you eventually do get around to messaging them, it can be like nothing has changed. Friends don’t demand things from each other in the same way romantic partners do. They are the people who support us, make us laugh, and are there when we need a shoulder to cry on.
Image courtesy of Bitch Media.
Romy and Michele in Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion (1997) epitomised the ride-or-die vibe of all great friendships. Who wouldn’t want a best friend who supports you on your fat-free gummy bear diet? Or a friend you can count on to slow-dance with you to Cyndi Lauper’s “Time After Time” when your prom date leaves you hanging. And the high school bullies? Pay them no mind! A best friend will love you for who you are and won’t shy away from dressing up in couture pieces with you to prove them wrong. Romy and Michele are the perfect example of how a strong bond can overcome any obstacle. Who cares about rejection when you’ve got a great friend to back you up?
And then there’s Jake and Finn from Adventure Time. Their friendship is all about support and teamwork. The pair always go out of their way to protect and cheer each other up. Remember the episode, “Incendium”, when Jake got Finn a girlfriend to make him feel better about being rejected and heartbroken? If this doesn’t prove that friends will be there for you even when you are sad and lonely, what does? Friends like these are with you for life, for better or worse, for richer or poorer.
Image courtesy of Pop Sugar.
Harry, Ron and Hermione prove that the best friendships can exist between more than two people. They didn’t become friends because they were “boys” or “girls”. They became friends because together they made a powerful trio. Their abilities and personalities complement each other and that’s what gets them through tough times.
And if there’s anything the three of them can count on, it’s their unconditional trust in each other. That trust also led to sacrifice. Hermione was a stickler for the rules, so rule-breaking was probably her worst nightmare. But, she set the rules aside time and time again to help Harry and Ron. While Ron had to sacrifice his ego to help his friends. You can’t help fading into the background when you are friends with “the boy who lived” and a prodigy like Hermione. Harry’s popularity could have easily made Ron resent him—but he didn’t. Ron always defended Harry and treated him like a brother. Harry’s whole life seemed to be about sacrifice. His parents and everyone around him made sacrifices for his sake. That puts a huge burden on you because you have to make those sacrifices meaningful. No matter how hard it was, Harry always managed to rise to the occasion because he saw his friends doing the exact same thing for him.
Platonic love is just as valuable and important as romantic love. A strong bond with another person is important as it gives us stability and helps us to make life just a little bit more fun! There are ups and downs in every type of relationship, but letting go of unrealistic expectations and making time for people who actually matter to us means that we can find fulfilment—and that’s just as important as finding “The One”!
Written by Stefanie.
Featured image courtesy of Them.