Friends first

It’s important to be friends. Friends in a marriage or a partnership. Yes, that may seem obvious, but it’s not as obvious as you think.

As Friedrich Nietzsche once said, “It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages,” and I agree. Without a firm friendship in place there will be very little to keep the relationship afloat long-term. The friendship thing works because it’s the glue that holds the relationship together.

Regardless of how relationships develop, it’s important we’re friends first. That way we will never wonder or want to look outside of where we are and is the reason why so many relationships fail. I’m not sure couples know how to be friends. Too many marriages fail because as soon as the romance ends, they have no idea how to function.

Being friends first helps us concentrate on getting the communication right. As friends, we not only give our time freely, but we learn to value each other’s company and respect each other’s opinions and values. Friends are generous with their time, their feelings and with their ideas.

Friends want to get to know each other first on a deeper more spiritual level. Friends draw on each other’s strengths, as they learn how to whether the storms together. Friends learn and grow together, treat each other as equals, are loyal and honest and have a willingness to meet conflict head on, because they care. They’re strong enough to ride the storms.

Friends talk openly about how they think and feel. They respect each other’s views and listen intently to what the other person has to say. The person they’re with is their best friend and although they’re a little scared on making the transition, they know it feels right and are therefore willing to take the risk.

Friends don’t have to try at the relationship, because they will already know how to be firm friends. Any marriage, or partnership is a two-way street, it’s never just about the physical, although that normally takes precedent when you meet someone for the first time and the friend bit is secondary.

It’s easier to develop a relationship from being firm friends, because emotionally you’ll be ready to commit, having done the friendship thing first. You’re in the relationship for the long haul, which is often how relationships start. Relationships aren’t always about sex.


6 Nov, 2016

6 thoughts on “Friends first

  1. Boy, isn’t that the truth! So many relationships begin with sex, without the people even really knowing each other and wonder why it falls apart so easily.

    Most of the time you’re married with children, before you know what hit you, like in my case. I was obviously thinking with the wrong brain, which seems to happen a lot when you’re young and dumb! I don’t regret my daughter being born, but it would have helped if the circumstances had been different.

    Her mother was a country girl and I’ve always been more of a city boy, so it was kind of doomed from the start. There were things about her and her family that would have made me think twice about getting involved with her had I known.

    This has been a defining pattern in my life, where I jump into relationships far too quickly and then always seem to come to regret it. My girlfriend now is an extrovert and I’m definitely more of an introvert, so once again, I’m doomed from the start.

    She somehow managed to rope me into thinking that it would be a great idea for me to move in with her, after only a short time knowing each other. This turned into 10 years of nonstop chaos that I could have once again avoided.

    I had a chance with another woman who I would have considered more of a friend, but allowed my fear of the unknown to make the easy choice. Sadly, I’ll never know what could have been, since I believe she died in 2010.

    It would make a lot more sense today, if people actually got to know each other before making babies and serious things like that.

    1. Thank you. Your last paragraph sums up your response nicely Randy. I believe getting to know someone away from the bedroom is vital to a happy and long lasting relationship.

      Sadly, I’m not sure how many of us try hard enough to make our relationships work. Whether you’re in a civil partnership, marriage or just cohabiting it’s important to make the relationship work.

      I believe there is too much emphasis on sex and not enough emphasis on the emotional side of the relationship. Even without babies in tow, there are still too many couples who don’t see their relationships for keeps. Someone in the back of their mind, sitting below the surface, they know they can always split up.

      When we’re friends first, we’ll have a friend for life and a more intimate relationship.

  2. Your blog is spot on. This is exactly what we should be basing long-term relationships on.

    Unfortunately, most of us start relationships as Randy says, with our other brain, or no brain at all; whereas friendship and respect are much more appropriate foundations for a successful relationship.

    1. Thank you. Perhaps as the newer generations come through, they will start to base their own lives on the values that matter.

      These things aren’t difficult to work out, but that if we take the time to think about our lives a little more and what’s important to us, we will come to understand more.

      We tend to place too much importance on the wrong things. The same goes for society and in the world and whilst that continues, our relationships will begin to struggle for some and continue to struggle for others.

  3. I’ve learned this lesson the hard way, putting everything first before I recognized a women’s innocence and destroying anything having to do with love, simply because I put friendship last.

    The good thing is I have atoned, people don’t get to do that too often.

    1. Thanks Tim. Yes, I believe you found a better way to be. We often learn the hard way, often at our cost; but we learn.

      I think the universe was aware even before you realised it was aware. The universe knows how we are, even before we’ve worked things out and is often willing to give us a second chance.

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