By Meghan Reynolds
When it comes to friends, everyone can claim they have them. However, there’s a fine line between a friend, and an acquaintance. What is that line? How do you cross it?
Have you ever suddenly found yourself surrounded by people you don’t entirely know? What’s more perplexing, is the fact that sometimes, you can’t recall anything about them. Their favorite colors, their favorite game, hobbies, anything.
In fact, if this is you, you’re not alone. There are many people who don’t understand what qualifies as true friendship. According to differencebetween.net, “acquaintances are those people who, even if you see them everyday, talk superficially with you.” Along with this, there may be gaps in presence, one-sided favors, and lack of personal space infiltration.
I sat down with Freshmen Jason Williams and Kyle Padilla, as well as Sophomore Paul Brown, and asked just what exactly made someone a friend, or an acquaintance. “I’m best friends with Jason, mainly because we’ve known each other since the third grade,” Padilla explains. Brown shared, “I’m acquaintances with Jason and Kyle, but I’ve known them for quite a while.”
I then asked if time had anything to do with relationships, to which the three all shrugged. “It’s not that time has anything to do with it,” Williams began, “you don’t have to be friends for a while to be ‘friends’.”
Savannah Salonis, Sophomore, had a bit of a different approach to this question. “Honestly,” she began, “an acquaintance is someone I don’t hang out with outside of school.” She shared that to her, friendship is the intimacy and ability to go to one another’s house, and consider each other family. If someone can’t make the time to meet up with Salonis after school,they haven’t crossed the threshold of a ‘friend’.
Similar to Salonis, Willie Valentine also vouched for the ‘hang out’ condition. “A friend is someone you talk to and hang out with like,” he paused, “85% of the time, and an acquaintance… probably 35%?” Valentine explains that the threshold between a friend is crossed when you make time for one another. “Whenever you walk in a hallway and call out to someone you don’t really know, it’s honestly just for a favor, nothing else.”
There are a few different ‘criterias’ for what makes a friend, and what makes an acquaintance. In all reality, it truly depends on your personality, and the willingness to bond with someone. To an acquaintance, you may be a friend, but to a friend- what are you really?