10 Paragraphs on Friendship

  1. The word “friendship” comes from Latin friends, derived from amicus (“Friend”), word composed of the verb i will love (“Want”, “love”) and the suffix -icus, that grants qualities, so it can be understood as “the one who is loved.” In other words, friendship is an affectionate relationship between two people who profess different degrees of respect, consideration, loyalty and companionship.
  2. For the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle (384-322 BC), there were three types of friendships possible between human beings: friendship out of interest, when friends hope to obtain something beneficial from the relationship; friendship for fun, which is based on obtaining mutual pleasure from friends; and virtuous friendship, which is not expected to take advantage of and which is based on sharing a vision of life and virtue, that is, on sharing certain transcendental values.
  3. If we were to identify the five basic traits of friendship, these would be:
    • It is a dual relationship, as it involves the interaction between two specific individuals.
    • It is reciprocal, since both individuals feel friends of the other and identify friendship as such.
    • It is voluntary, that is, you cannot force someone to be a friend, nor can you prevent someone from being a friend.
    • It is normally egalitarian, that is, friends perceive each other as equal or equivalent, without there being a hierarchical or power relationship.
    • It is commonly accompanied by joint activities, in which companionship, intimacy are reinforced, and some emotional support is provided.
  1. The nature of friendship varies at different stages of life, just as all social relationships do. Thus, in childhood it is common for friendship to be restricted to the enjoyment of similar activities (games, meals, for example), while in adolescence friendship is a key part of identity development (group and individual) and it is often a source of intimacy and emotional support, which is why it usually appears between individuals of the same sex only. In the adult stage, on the other hand, friendship tends to calm and shared interests (professional, aesthetic, etc.), without distinction of sex and with a significant amount of respect for the life and decisions of the other.
  2. There is abundant literature on the great friendships of humanity, real or imagined, such as that of Don Quixote and his squire Sancho Panza, that of Sherlock Holmes and his companion Watson, the one that united the three musketeers, or the friendship of the famous fugitives from the cinema, Thelma and Louise. In general, these friendships develop, grow, and strengthen throughout the characters’ adventures, and are often put to the test.
  3. Friendship can also occur between humans and certain domestic animals, which is why the dog is known as “man’s best friend.” However, in these cases the relationship tends to be more familiar and less rational, more based on custom and loyalty typical of a pack. In the case of human beings, the complexity of relationships and the different ways of being (personality) make friendship a complex, diverse phenomenon with many different types: there are correspondence friendships (that is, at a distance ), friends with rights (that is, with permission to have sexual or erotic relations), intermittent friendships, and so on.
  4. The whole world celebrates Friend’s Day or Friendship Day, as a way of thanking these positive relationships in our lives. However, this commemoration takes place on different days according to each country or region: in Argentina, Brazil, Spain and Uruguay it is celebrated on July 20, in Paraguay on July 30, in Bolivia on July 23, and in others countries is celebrated together with the day of love, on February 14. However, the United Nations General Assembly proposed in 2011 that July 30 be the official date for International Friendship Day.
  5. Friendship is not a static bond but it is dynamic and changing. Friendship can go through three different stages: the formation stage, in which individuals go from being strangers to being acquaintances and then to recognizing each other as friends, undergoing mutual experiences in order to get to know each other and establish the affective bond; then the stage of conservation of friendship, in which individuals share daily activities and show each other the inner world, in such a way that the more time shared, the more depth there is in the friendly bond; and finally the dissolution stage, in which the bond weakens and dissolves, sometimes traumatic or painful, sometimes just imperceptibly.
  6. In 1958, the so-called “World Friendship Crusade” was born in Paraguay, a civil organization and international initiative that seeks to celebrate friendship between peoples and enhance the culture of peace. Created in the city of Puerto Pinasco, 527 km from Asunción, on June 20, 1958, it was the main promoter of World Friendship Day, long before its recognition by the United Nations.
  7. Friendship can be a source of happiness and joy in our lives, as long as we know how to choose those who will accompany us during different stages of our lives. Mutual respect, loyalty and compassion are some of the fundamental pillars of this bond, which according to the French writer Albert Camus is recognized because “a friend arrives when everyone has left”.


  • “Friendship” in Wikipedia.
  • “The three types of friendship” (video) at BBVA Aprendamos Juntos.
  • “Friendship” in the Dictionary of the Language of the Royal Spanish Academy.
  • “Friendship” in The Encyclopaedia Britannica.