Friendship isn't a big thing, it's a million little things.
Over the past several weeks I have had many conversations about what constitutes a "real" friend.
Many people think the relationships forged online are not real. How could you be that close to someone you have never "met"?
I really don't think the mystery is all that elusive. When you blog, you bear your soul so to speak. You feel comfortable in your space and you share your life, your inner most thoughts, your inner most fears, the things that make you angry, the things that make you sad, and all the things that bring you joy.
How many of your face to face friends do you share all of that with? My guess is slim to none. There are always reasons that we tend to withhold parts of ourselves with face to face friends. Susie might overreact, so we curtail the conversation to avoid her tantrum. Julie may be too sensitive because her husband cheated so we don't talk about that around her. Meg might take it wrong if I say I spanked my child because she was abused as a child. Tess always blows things out of proportion because she is a drama queen. You get the idea.
We know all these things about our F2F friends so we hold back bits and pieces of ourselves. When we "meet" people online, they meet us without all those pretenses. They read our about our daily lives and decide to become invested in them by reading everyday. Those who aren't invested don't come back day after day for more. But those who do visit daily "know" us.
They know our humor. They know our snark. They know what makes us angry and what makes us sad. They know our failures and our triumphs, regardless of how trivial or momentous. I had a very good bloggy buddy tell me recently that she was much closer to her F2F friends who read her blog, for many of the reasons I have already mentioned.
So to me, it makes perfect sense that we feel so deeply for our own(other bloggers). We know the good, the bad and the ugly, and we choose to care about them anyway. That's usually what most people define as family. You know everything about them and love them anyway.
So tell me Smackers. How do you define "friend"?
Friends are relatives you make for yourself.