From Dr. Jane's Notebook

Best Friends

Friendship is an essential ingredient in life. It makes the difference between feeling lonely or feeling part of things. Whether one is trying to adapt to life in a new town, adjusting to a new job or trying to establish a social life, friends are the support beams in the structure of our lives.

Judith Viorst is one of the outstanding writers of our time. She is a poet, a psychoanalyst, and has written books that address a variety of life stages. One early book, It's Hard to be Hip over Thirty and other tragedies of Married Life caught my attention many years ago. More recently, she wrote a very fine non-fiction called Necessary Losses, in which she describes different types of friendships. In the effort to understand our friendships and the roles that different people play in our daily dramas, it seems fitting to share her thoughts on the matter.

As Judith Viorst describes... "Rosie is my friend. She likes me when I'm dopey and not just when I'm smart"... "Michael is my friend. He likes me when I'm grouchy and not just when I'm nice. I worry alot about werewolves, and he understands..."

Further... "Rosie would try to save me if there was a tidal wave. She'd hunt for me if kidnappers stole me away. And if I were never found again, she could have my Instamatic. She is my friend"..."If Michael told me a secret and people clonked me and bopped me, I wouldn't tell what Michael's secret was...And then if people said 'speak up or we'll feed you to the piranhas', Michael would forgive me for telling his secret".

Friends come in all shapes, sizes and species. If your friend-census is down a bit, look harder for your friends from the past or new friends in the present. They may also be looking for you.

ęCopyright, 1991, 1995, Jane R. Rosen-Grandon. All rights reserved.

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Last Updated November 14, 1998 by Gary M. Grandon, Ph.D.