What is the purest definition of friendship

Friendship is true love

"You are the cutest couple I know." We have known each other for two years now, at some point we fell in love. Since then you have become the person I quickly express my love for before falling asleep. To whom I send emoji hearts for no reason. Where I get that warm feeling of home. You have become my person. I call this a heart stand, an emotional erection. You say you feel like your heart is being hugged. We are really a cute couple, but our love is not a classic romance. She is platonic.

"Friends only" —subject to a romantic relationship. From an early age we are taught the importance of friendship, but also its secondary importance. We look for love, find children, go on bad dates, "try" with people we didn't particularly like from the start, and then split up again. All just to be a couple at some point.

Romantic love can be the best thing in the world, but it can also be fucking painful. Not to mention their durability. That's not to say that friendships are always easy. Sometimes they even bring with them feelings that are usually associated with classic love relationships: jealousy, suspicion, fear, anger. According to the Berlin psychotherapist Wolfang Krüger, 50 percent of all friendships also come to an end after seven years - but mostly superficial friendships. On the other hand, friends of the heart, with whom an emotional intimacy develops, you usually have for a lifetime. "The greater love" has it time called a few months ago.

"Nobody loves me", howls a single friend to me. "But I love you!" I reply to her. She smiles, rolls her eyes: "Yes, but that doesn't count." Right now, I'm the one sitting across from her, listening to her, cheering her up, and yet I'm the one whose love doesn't count for her — because we don't sleep together. Her "nobody loves me" really means that there is nobody in her life who loves her and regularly has exclusive sex with her.

We then use the word "relationship" to label this type of relationship. If you are not in such a relationship, you probably do not lead any, you are probably even incapable of relationships, even though you basically lead many of them. The relationship with my parents, the relationship with my siblings, the relationship with you.

If it's so difficult for us to find someone to have this love-and-sex relationship with, then maybe it is time to change our priorities for a relationship. The term "power couple" has long outgrown Brangelina and Kimye. Instead there are duos like Schweini and Poldi - probably the greatest bromance since J.D. and Turk — or Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, who refer to each other as "Life Partners". A prominent ideal of a relationship is more and more of a friendship.

This type of being in love is probably celebrated most beautifully in at the moment Broad City. The two protagonists Abbi and Ilana are not looking for great love, they found it a long time ago. Broad City shows a form of friendship that is superior to — counteracts — the romantic relationship Sex and the City almost as if the four female main characters were simply sitting down together until the perfect man finally arrives.

SATC shows romantic love as the primary goal in any single life, friendships are treated as secondary, at best, supportive relationships — and even those have been reclassified. For example, if Carrie was transferred from a date, one of the other women had to serve as alternative employment. And if they all didn't have time, then the gay best friend also had one of his gigs.

Broadly: Do stupid people have a lot of friends?

Like in the 90s Sex and the City maybe still worked progressively, occupied today Broad City that role — especially when it comes to love. The men and women with whom Abbi and Ilana sometimes sleep more, sometimes less regularly exist, but they are supporting roles. The elementary relationship of their lives is the one they have with one another. Both always express their undying love for each other and feel pure bliss when the other has had good sex. When Ilana hears of Abbi's upcoming strap-on experience, she does a dance of joy in which she heads the wall upside down and speaks of a "dream come true". This is love In a semi-dangerous situation, she even slips out a marriage proposal to Abbi, which she immediately denies.

One could think further here: If the principle of a permanent relationship with a romantic partner is no longer particularly up-to-date anyway, it would almost make more sense to marry the people of life in which sex does not even become a complicator. Marital cohabitation is not specifically mentioned in the law - so if both of you are cool about being married or partnered friends without sleeping together, that wouldn't be a problem in theory. If you can get your heart friend and sex rolled into one - so much the better.

As long as I have known Livia and Katja, they describe themselves as each other's "people of life": "I am always a little afraid when I share my thoughts on our friendship with someone else, because then everyone will surely think I am in love with them . But I swear I love the dick! " When Katja describes the relationship to me, she speaks of the "purest form of love", something some clever philosopher would have said about friendship one way or another - and he should have been right.

"Many friendships tend to concentrate on one focus in everyday life - party friends, blasphemers, university friends," says Katja. And then there is the kind that she defines as "true friendship": "I think nothing has increased my self-confidence in life more than knowing that there is someone who will always appreciate and love me Person who will never care how I feel - hence the person of life. " It is amazing that it is not connections like these that most of us seek when they seem so much more valuable. Instead, we'd rather claim that they don't count.

Katharina Smutny runs the "refueling station" facility in Vienna, where friendship counseling is offered in addition to conventional couples therapies. Smutny first explains to me the fundamental differences between the types of relationships and also points out parallels. In a classic love relationship, there would not only be an additional sexual component, but also rules and expectations that are usually not given in a friendship. In traditional friendships there are no unspoken commitments to the other.

Whether the social weighting of platonic and romantic relationships could experience a change in the future? Smutny rejects the idea: "As a rule, there is no physical closeness among friends, and people long for this symbiosis." Nevertheless, she believes she recognizes that friendships are becoming more and more important today - even vital: an analysis of studies on the risk of death recently showed that people with good friends have a 50 percent higher probability of survival. A weak social environment has roughly the same effect on our health as smoking.

Still, friendships are treated like second-class relationships. Perhaps there is no need for a shift in place values, or a primacy of friendship over romances. If love really always wins - and it does - then we don't have to classify and categorize it. We just have to recognize them. You may have found the love of your life long ago.

Franz on Twitter: @FranzLicht


Photo: Nani Puspasari | Flickr | CC BY-ND 2.0

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