Discourage ‘best’ friends

Can you have more then one “best” friend? Tweet @MSUMadvocate #bestfriends

Opinion Editor April Knutson

Opinion Editor April Knutson

There can only be one best friend, according to the definition, as “best” is of the highest quality or standard or the most excellent type.

Only one person knows the secret fears, deepest ambitions, self- destructive tendencies and horribly hilarious moments of failures and triumphs.

But people are selfish by instinct, the inherent self-preservation and self-satisfying desire that all humans serve whether they admit it or not. The simple truth is that no one can be available to give himself or herself to anyone or anything entirely. There will be times when friends, even best friends, fail. They will make mistakes, large and small, be absent when one another is desperately seeking comfort.

Do people then demote their “best friend” to “friend”? Do we all have a rotating roster of friends, used-to-be best friend, next best friend, might- be-friends and so on? Possibly, but I would hope that the majority have found a better way.

In March of 2012, several elementary schools in England enacted a policy to encourage children to play in large groups, discouraging “best friends,” as reported by Fox News and The Sun, a London-based newspaper.

Although this may seem ridiculous, as anyone cannot prevent others from forming close relationships, it’s an interesting concept. These children are learning the importance of having an open-heart and mind, to not set strict boundaries for who will not be a intricate part of their lives.

Like a polygamist, one can have several significant relationships. Like The Beatles, we all get by with a little help from our friends. If there is one certainty, it’s that life is tough and people are flawed. I have seen too many friendships fade away due to guilt-filled, party-of-one self-pity. Remember this Swedish proverb, “Shared joy is a double joy; sheared sorrow is half a sorrow,” and reconnect with old acquaintances. Never underestimate what a shared laugh can do.

I have been lucky to meet wonderful people at college. I came here a nervous, wide-eyed girl with no acquaintances. Today, I have gained the trust of a few caring individuals who have been there to pick me up as I stumble, trying to refine the path I desire most. Forgive me for this mush-filled column, but its important to be thankful for those who have opened themselves to friendship, be forgiving, and enjoy these relationships with mutual affection.

BY APRIL KNUTSON
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