Maintaining friendships is a lot harder than it seems. Sometimes we’re just too busy to hang out, or we can feel a friendship slowly drifting away, or one little fight can send years of friendship spiraling into a hellhole of passive aggressiveness. Anything can happen, and now that we live in a world where we can get major FOMO just from seeing a pic of two of our friends hanging out without us, it can feel even harder to hang on to the friends that we’ve got.
And if you haven’t experienced that kind of FOMO before, consider yourself lucky. Even if it wasn’t done intentionally to exclude you from a hangout session, it sucks, and it’s hard not to look into it too deeply.
But even if you feel insecure about the state of your most prized friendships…maybe you have no real reason to actually feel that way. In fact, to ease your mind, check out these nine signs that you’re actually a better friend than you think you are. Your friends might not always sing your praises, and you might not always feel like you’re being the best friend you can be, but if anything on this list sounds familiar, it’s time to stop sweating the small stuff.
Your Friends Confide In YouIf your friends trust you with their secrets, their worries, or even their good fortune, treasure that. Seriously. When you're the friend your pal can feel vulnerable around, that's a big honor. That also means that you probably don't blab your mouth about other people's business around them...think about it: If you're telling someone else's secrets, why would your friend trust you with theirs? So, good job, dude!
You Know When Your Friend Is Feeling DownHonestly, this isn't as obvious for some as you might think. A good friend can just tell that something is off, and might even be the first one to ask, "Hey, are you okay?" Plus, it's one thing to notice that your friend is in an off mood, it's another to actually engage with them and try to make them feel better. That separates an okay friend from an amazing one.
You're Not A FlakeFlakiness can really break a friendship. Think about it: When there's a friend who always flakes out on you, are you going to want to keep trying to hang with them? Nope. If you're a friend who almost always commits to hanging out (or, at least cancels for legit reasons), you're a rare breed.
You Know When To Choose Friends Over BaesIt's so easy to get caught up in a relationship--it happens to all of us--but a good friend knows how to have balance and never abandons her friends in favor of thirst.
You Always Pay Your Friends BackThere's nothing worse than a friend who borrows money and never pays you back. As someone who has been on both sides of this issue, I know that a good friend is someone who I can trust on this front. If you pay your friends back in cold hard cash or even pizza, you're a keeper.
You're Not Afraid Of Tough LoveYou know that epic scene from Mean Girls when Janis calls Cady a mean girl? Well, maybe you're not quite so harsh, but one of the signs of a strong friendship is the ability to know how to give tough love. It might be a little hard, and it might not be exactly what your friend wants to hear, but if it's for their own good...
You Don't See Your Friends As CompetitionIf you always see your friends as competition, you're just asking for an awkward and toxic relationship. Good friends don't do this.
Your Friendships Aren't Ruined Over Little ARgumentsSome friendships have perfectly legit reasons to end over a disagreement--maybe your friend isn't down with gay people, or holds racist beliefs. But to end a friendship over a basic quibble? A disagreement over music or a celebrity? Beefing over a harmless opinion? If all of this is unfamiliar to you, consider yourself lucky (and a good friend who isn't petty AF).
Your Friends Go To You For Your OpinionsWhen your opinion matters, that's a sign that you're a friend that your pals can really respect. Whether it's about politics or what color dress they should cop on sale, if you're a go-to, this is a serious honor.
What else proves that someone is a good friend? Tell us in the comments!