Real love is not your SO, it’s your best friends

Wednesday, March 10

By Héloïse Patin

When you are in high school, or even middle school, your life revolves around your friends and school. However, you might also find yourself fantasizing about having a romantic relationship, more than anything.

At that age (or even now if we’re being honest), you want a love like Johnny and June. You want to know why people say love is all you need, or what it feels like to can't help falling in love with someone. You wonder how someone could be a wonderland, what it feels like to be loved just the way we are or for all of us.

Unfortunately, I cannot tell you what that feels like. Like every life lesson, it can be understood only by being experienced. But regardless of whether you are waiting for it, living it, or trying to get over it, you have to keep in mind that romance is not the only thing that matters in your personal life, and can very much be lived without.

Some people seem to think that their purpose is to find a dream job, a dream house, and most of all the dream love, and that after this has been achieved they have nothing more to want. I cannot argue that these things aren’t important, but the goal of finding a larger support system that will be there for you is, in my experience, often forgotten.

Friends are important because you have the power to choose them. And if you choose well, they will help you grow, forgive your mood swings and accept your flaws, because they know you. They will be there to support you whether you are having a great day or a hard one.

Speaking from experience, I may not have a metric ton of friends, but the ones I have are better than I could have asked for. They have been there for me at every important moment. When I received a bad grade after an important exam, my friend skipped a class to cheer me up. When I was anxious before a presentation, my friends were there to make me laugh just to relieve my stress. My friends were the first people I wanted to jump and scream with when we recived the results of our senior exams.

People tend to focus on the love stories in tv shows or movies, but Blair and Serena could not have been themselves without one another. Derek is not Meredith’s grand love, Christina and Alex are. Monica, Rachel, Phoebe, Chandler, Joey and Ross were the stars of the show, not just Ross and Rachel. Lily, Ted, Marshall, Barney, and Robin were an amazing group of friends we’ve all wanted to be apart of, even if the show centers around Ted and the mother”’s relationship.

You will not be able to overcome the trials that life will throw at you without your squad, your gang, your homies. Everybody needs that unwavering support in their life. In fact, the first rule when you begin a new romantic relationship is to not let it impact your friendships.

The constant search for this “true love”, a fling, a high school sweetheart, to act like everyone else and date is overprioritized in many people’s lives. Not having an S.O is normal and should not be a source of pressure for anyone, or a unit of measurement for happiness or success. Everybody goes through life at their own pace and should wait to be ready and to find the right person. In the meantime, I believe friends are the true love of your life, and love between friends is one of the most precious things you can have.


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