In the 1990’s, you wore a broken heart necklace that read, “best” on one half and the other read, “buds.” In the early 2000’s, you wrote each other gel-pen notes in class and gave each other secret code names. At some point in college, you tried to bring back friendship bracelets and made each other feel less alone on a big, busy campus. These are the things we do for our best gal pals; it’s a way to feel comfort and closeness with your very own sidekick. Here are some things that have taken the place of those gel-pen, secret-coded notes in 2015:
1. A real friend “likes” your Instagram posts. We all know that photo that we wished we never posted, maybe even deleted, after seeing that it only got 1 like and it was some robot spam account. Help a sister out and click “like” to show that you celebrate their life with them.
2. A real friend does not watch How to Get Away with Murder or New Girl or The Mindy Project or whatever your shows are (it’s embarrassing how long the list is) and tell you about it before you’ve seen it. The show can definitely change the intensity of the situation but we all know that good friends wait until we both know #WhoKilledSam before we exchange our thoughts on the matter.
3. A real friend will text you or email you links to adorable articles on friendship or fun listicles that specifically interest you.
4. A real friend will also share with you their latest Netflix addiction because we all know how empty life can feel when you finish a series. (How will I ever get the laundry folded now?)
5. A real friend probably follows your parents on Instagram or is friends with them on Facebook and still wishes them a “Happy Birthday!”
6. A real friend will give you their honest opinion when you text them a picture of two outfits you need to decide between for an event later that day.
7. A real friend will text you funny Vine videos right when you are nearing a true meltdown at work.
8. A real friend will sing and dance with you in the car. This seems like a small task but can really make or break a road trip.
9. A real friend will eat junk with you when you’ve had the worst week because nothing is more sad than eating Doritos and pizza next to your kale salad. (I’m not sure if that’s even a thing.)
10. A real friend will understand and appreciate the reference, “You’re the Ann to my Leslie.”
11. A real friend will never make you feel bad for sharing your feelings about something. It’s that honesty and straight-forwardness that saves you from a lifetime of passive-aggressive comments and sends you into a real, healthy, adult friendship.
12. A real friend will share in the times you’ve felt slighted and maintain a standing invitation to vent.
13. A real friend gets it when you say you’re exhausted and would rather just stay in sweatpants and catch up on all of your recorded television than put on a bra.
14. A real friend will send you song lyrics or YouTube videos of music to add to your playlist. These are the songs that make you think of them when they surprise you on the drive home and that kind of thing makes you smile.
15. A real friend works hard at making you feel like a teammate and not a competitor. There’s enough of that everywhere else. We should be able to work on genuine happiness for people that we love.