The Ground Rules for Friendship

Send Friendship Day EcardsWhile I was writing the newsletter the other week, I wrote about the ‘ground rules of friendship’. I wanted to write more but there wasn’t much room or time, so the blog is an excellent place to have the discussion continue!

There were a lot of ideas floating in my mind about friendships. I mean, each person approaches friendship in a different way. There are people we call ‘acquaintances’, and then there are people we call ‘friends’, and there are the select few who are confidants and are our ‘best friends’. What defines your friendship? What are the ground rules of your friendships? Or should there be any rule at all?

Human relationships can never be dictated or limited by a set of rules. No relationship is an imitation of the other and no fixed law can claim to envelope all the aspects of even one relationship. However, there are principles that we follow to make a friendship flourish. What are your principles? Let me know what you think by leaving comments below in the section!


24 thoughts on “The Ground Rules for Friendship

  1. Ya know, friendships are odd things when you really think about it. people connecting with other people through common ideas and personalities. i just met a new friend last night through another good friend of mine. Even though i just met her, we became close friends because we have a lot in common, it was kinda weird but nice. We talked mainly about each other’s lives and things that go along with it: previous relationships, kids, work ect… We get along well because of common pasts and similar personalities i think. We also exchanged numbers and made plans to hang out some more, so thats a new friendship thats started for me and I’m pretty happy about it. i mean, who can turn down a new friendship?

  2. Hi Bob.
    Really enjoy reading your news letters, and checking out your new blog. I have used 123 greeting cards for years.
    On friendships: My out look on friendships are, when meeting someone new, is this person someone I would like to know better or just be friendly to them but not get close too them. I don’t think there are set rules. I play it by ear when I meet someone new.

  3. Dear Editor Bob,

    You are good for a laugh. At the risk of pointing out the obvious, you crossed over the line of invading personal space a long time ago with your Newsletter and various characters.

    But you’re still a friend, I hope. Sometimes its hard to know.

    With regard to principles to make a friendship flourish, I think it all comes down to boundaries, like the book- ” Boundaries Where You End and I Begin.” Sometimes the need for these becomes clearer as a friendship progresses. I suppose there is an ebb and flow to friendships. “A time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing.”

    Or the principle of the golden rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

    Or the principle of grace, “See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.”

    Love much, overlook a lot, change a little.


  4. in truth there really are no real rules. Things like interests,personality help to create bonds of friendship.but to have best friends i guess they have to earn your trust.

  5. I am old school, because I am old to you younger crowd(48). A friend to me is very much like family, there are no boundries if you truly care about that person. They are welcome in your home without knocking, you see them everyday and when something happens good or bad you let each know about day or night.
    Sounds like you have quite a few of those friends, Bob!

  6. True friends, the ones you can confide in, are your best buds. They are there for you in the good times as well as the bad times, they never desert you. They never judge you but are always there when you fall to help you pick back up the pieces. They may offer advice but will never force to to make the decision they think you should make. They let you be yourself and love you for it. There is also unquestionable trust. If you cannot trust someone then there is no relationship and friendship is a type of relationaship. But you must be these things back to your best bud. Best Bud Friendship cannot be one-sided. Casual friendship is most likely one-sided but may not, same with just friends. These last two may just come into a period in your life that they are needed and then they are gone. But Best Friend Buds are forever!

  7. Ground rules of friendship is an interesting subject. I too felt uncomfortable just reading about what Leo did to you. I mean I kind of agree with Katrina’s point of view on if you have the same interests and over time getting to know them better then sharing personal stuff is ok. But before that no, I don’t think so.

  8. Hello Bob,
    When it comes to having a friend, I have found you have to be a friend first in order to have a friend. I have never met anyone who is not a friend – I mean I do not need any enemies nor to I have time for that arena – life is too short. I have been retired for the last few years and landed a job at the local YMCA as property manager, (fancy title for maintenance man). These folks are the nicest and easiest to love people I have ever met and I feel very blessed to know them and spend time with them. My very best friend is my sweet and beautiful wife of 47 years and every day with her is better than the day before. I love her more than yesterday and less than tomorrow.
    Keep the newsletter coming, I enjoy it very much.
    Thanks – C.A.B.

  9. hey Bob,
    Back in school I used to have very close friends, confidantes in whom I could pour myself out.As I grew we jus got separated.Now I have frens at work, we talk about work,family and anything tht comes up.That’s about it.We meet outside for dinner smtimes but we don hangout together like u do.After work ,we have our own lives.Family frens I do have but we kind of meet mayb at weddings n such. Recently my schoolmates had a big do but I cldnt make it.Mayb I am a loner or something but I njoy my privacy very much! There r no rules in a friendship jus be frens or don’t.It’s ur call.How deep it goes only time can tell.
    To me it works fine keeping that space.

  10. Hi Bob,

    I agree with you that there are different types and levels of friendship. True friends are those you could always rely on, pour your heart out and who will never fail you in any situation at any time.

  11. Hello BOB nice to hear and read in this blog because I always find the free card for birthday or anniversary card in your website because it’s really FREE hehehehe.
    And I always read your story which you always send to my mail box.
    Well it would be good to find you not just because I need something in your website but now it will be the good thing to talk freely and maybe find the new friend by your BLOG.
    Thank you so much for letting me know about this blog,CONGRATULATION AND SUCCESS BOB.

  12. Hello from Brasil!

    Dear Bob,

    The quote ” a friend in need is a friend indeed ‘ has never been so true to me at the moment, and then I think I can share the same thought with you and all here!

    Sílvia Oliveira

  13. Hello hon…

    I have read your stories, they are Good Ones !

    Friendships come and go ! An the Bible scripture, a season, a reason, is so true ! Only God knows why some people come into your life and stay, and some have to leave. Friendship and love is a great thing ! An its purpose is contacts to take you through a lesson ! An A good friend will see you through the lesson ! We have to say bye to some friends, Which hurts. However we had that friendship, that will carry on in our hearts as, a true friend ! I hope you have many true friends yet to come !

    As for the double date story ! That was a bummer ! I’d a told the guy, MAn I ain’T youR Pal ! Putting and inphasis on the sentence ! May have been a few other choice words too ! As for the new date, least you took a chance ! Only way you would now if she were the right girl for you !

    Computer dates ? I do not know about them either ! I joined a christian dating service and got many contacts. I took my time in viewing them all. Never chatted with none ! I knew that this computer meeting could lead to some bad settups ! Do to the people helping you meet, Only new basics of who you, and the possible matchup date were. However in all the wait, I met and matched up with a guy, that I fell in love with 4 years earlier ! thank goodness I was slow to get a computer matchup ! I may have missed being put together with the man I was already in love with ! Do be careful with computer, or real life dating ! People are not what they always seem !

    I enjoy your 123greetings !
    God Bless !

  14. when I hear ….another person saying ‘hi’…. the warmth the word carries spreads instantly….and…so soothingly as of the ‘morning SUN rays’ …. automatically my mind thinks of the new friend…blessed are those encircled in FRIENDSHIP BONDAGE….longlive the feelings of FRIENDSHIP on this GLOBE….

  15. I am from India. Somehow your newsletters get into my mailbox. I enjoy reading your newsletters though. There is always something that touches the heart. Friendship is a hard subject. It may take a whole life to learn. I have heard of an old saying, “to excel in human relationship is like writing- it takes a lot of efforts, time and experience”. I am not so sure if a good writer is also good at human relationship, but it is certainly worth trying after reading about you and your buddies.

  16. whatsup guys
    I whole heartedly love the template of Looks good, keep it up!
    Im a very “strong” christian and I guess I have a few questions on my mind..
    I’ve been thinking a lot about dating.. but im not sure where to begin.
    My cousins have been telling me christian dating is the way to go.. so I’ve done a little studying on columbus christian singles and found some stuff on google
    Would be awesome to hear your input.

  17. WOwo… This is an extremely interesting topic. Ive been living with my 3 best buddies for about 4 years, well it wasnt that Ok at the first year but we made it through time has to say good bye. My GOD, it was tough!! Definetly tough!! No more cheery smile welcoming my days, silly story before went to bed, night out with the girls. Hehe.. writing this almost teared my eyes 😀 – anyway, for me, best friends are miracles along the road … and I cherish them each and evryday. Takes life time to tribute relationship called “best friend”
    Best friend for me is : somebody who i’ll turn to in time of troubles. Years ago before i get to know my best friends, never thought there will be best friend in the world, since nobodys best and perfect, God is my best friend. Yet after meeting this charmed people, i had a brand new perspective of best friens. I see God’s love through them and i learn to love the way they love me 🙂 – Really precious lessons

  18. Ground rules for friendship start with the basics – being available and responsive. The next level is reciprocation. If you always make the plans and your friend never reciprocates, it’s a sign the friendship is one-sided. One-sided friendships lead to bitterness and hurt feelings. It’s best to nip it in the bud with a conversation than to let it fester. If a conversation is too scary or seems awkward, let the friendship go. It won’t get to the next level.

    Once you are past reciprocation, the friendship has potential to grow and flourish. At this stage, it is necessary to take risks and be vulnerable. Otherwise the relationship remains superficial. A superficial friendship is fine, if it’s what you want. If not, take a risk and go deeper. The reward is worth it!

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