Characteristics of Friendship
The Early Stage of Friendship
This stage is the beginning of the process of developing friendship. This is meeting a person for the first time during normal routine activities. This person is by then just an acquaintance. You have brief chats with, get along with well and know very few details about. You are rarely alone with him or her and mostly spend time with the person in groups of other acquaintances.
This particular individual is an acquaintance because you just met with but you do not know him well.
However in this stage there is a bit of testing carried out by either me or my acquaintance. It is done to foresee whether this relationship can mature into a friendship or we will remain as acquaintances.
Say I go first, I have to disclose my safe personal information to her as a way of showing that am driving into having friendship with her. This information is such as; where I live, my family, my work place and my funny experiences. If she fails or insists to hold back her private matters, then it is better to stop forcing her to be my friend and let us remain as acquaintances. Some relationships are just meant to be acquaintances but the most important aspect in life is that nobody can succeed in trying to make an individual fall for something. It is upon his own decision.
The Middle Stage of Friendship
At this stage, the open-minded and free with each other acquaintances become fond of each other. There is giving and receiving of gifts between the parties with no expectation of pay back for the gifts. I may decide to sneak a moment from work so that I buy friend a special pack for her birthday that is going to happen tonight. Assuming my job hardly offers a break off for lunch.
The acquaintances begin to make sacrifice for the sake of another. They feel the urge to spend time with each other either by themselves or together with other buddies. This kind of urge is flamed by the commonness between them: same experiences, sense of humor, knowledge, and uniquely the sacrifices one has made and the trust in each other.
The Mature Stage of Friendship
This is the stage where acquaintanceship is no more because friends know each other mentally, spiritually (how they each handle their religions) and physically (obvious appearance and the sickness one is going through). There is 99% understanding of each other (0.1% is totally secrets that are unnecessary to reveal). They know when it is suitable to visit, surprise or give assistance and even prepare assistance to a fellow in case he faces a known danger.
To reach to this stage, there must be self-disclosure. At the first stage, I spotted an example of an acquaintance refusing to disclose her personal information. Nevertheless, the more I stay with her the more I get to know her by the outside. Reaching the mature stage means she will disclose her private life to me. I will reciprocate by telling her mine too. Therefore we become close colleagues thereby turning our Acquaintanceship into a Friendship.
This is the stage of true friendship. Friends already met and know and understand each other better. They know the proper way of acting intimately to each other through emotional expressiveness. They unconditionally support each other- not just materially but emotionally and spiritually.
Tips and Cautions To Watch Out For
Always bear in mind that there are different kinds of relationships: romantic relationships, friendships and acquaintanceship. Enjoy them for what they are but never try to force them to change.
Romantic relationship is critical unlike friendship. The differences are so wide but invisible for some of us who are “blinded by love”. Romance is a very interesting topic since it plays around with emotions and feelings. The interest is a common aspect even in friendship but just to mention the gaps between romance and friendships. I found out from research and experience;
Very open to reveal our weak points to our friends. So no secrets hidden.
Mind not about behavior
Is optional – one can choose to share fun with another group of friends and leave the other aside easily.
Packages of secrets hidden since we keep our weak points aside so as to show our partners the best points.
Critically watch behavior-to ensure we act as an adult (mature)
Is firm – it is difficult or very rare transferring romance so it is concrete deliberate relationship usually dedicated only to one person.
The people you relate with could be either Friends or Acquaintances. Group them into these two groups. This is necessary so as to avoid feelings of people betraying you or getting confused, just because you trusted the wrong people and unnecessarily shared some information with them.