As we grow up, we meet so many different people throughout our lives. Sometimes you meet people you think will always be a part of your life, people you consider friends. But being teenagers it seems as if our friends change constantly.
Sometimes it gets confusing trying to tell who is going to stick around and who's going to bail when things get tough. So how do you tell a true friend from a phony? Here are eight key things that are found in a true friendship.
1 A true friend will have a positive impact in your life. People that bring you down, whether it's academically or socially, are phonies. A true friend will encourage you to keep trying when you feel like giving up. He or she will cheer you up when you're sad and remind you to appreciate the little things, such as laughter.
2 A true friend knows your boundaries. People that pressure you to do things you don't want to do are phonies. A true friend will understand your boundaries and respect them even if theirs are different from yours.
In any argument it is better to see both sides. People who are one-sided and do not take the time to view your perspective are phonies. A true friend will take into consideration your view of the situation and even if they do not agree, they will be willing to agree to disagree.
4 A true friend will appreciate you for who you are. Someone who constantly tries to change you or ridicule you is a phony. True friends won't always like your flaws, but they'll accept them. They'll see you for who you are, and you'll feel comfortable enough to be yourself with them.
5 A true friend will help you be the best possible version of yourself. People who bring out the worst in you or influence you negatively are phonies. When you feel like you've lost yourself, a true friend will bring you back to the best version of you.
6 A true friend will grow with you. One of the biggest problems teens seem to have with friendship are all the changes we experience. As we grow up, our friends that we think we know can change into someone we don't know. We also experience changes ourselves -- so really it's just about learning to cope with all the changes.
People who don't like the changes you've made and who you have become are phonies. A true friend will not resent the change, but grow with it as you do. A friend will understand and even though she may not always like the changes, she'll accept them.
7 A true friend will be honest with you. Lying is one of the biggest factors in the destruction of a friendship. Sometimes we feel too afraid to be honest with other people because we fear the consequences. People who spread rumors, who talk behind your back, or who leave you out so you are the last to know things, are phonies. A true friend will tell you the truth even if it could cause problems. You both have to believe in the friendship enough to be willing to try and work things out.
8 A true friend will always be there for you. Someone who seems to never be around when you need them, or only uses you to help themselves, is a phony. Whether it's crying over an ex or stressing out over a grade at school, a true friend will be there for you. No matter how long the phone call, they'll stay on the line with you.
It's never easy to tell a true friend from a phony. But maybe one day you will meet someone that will change what friendship means to you. And hopefully these eight qualities will help you see the truly great friends in your life.
Miranda Nicole Romero is a junior at St. Joseph Catholic High School. She enjoys volleyball, cheerleading and track and field. E-mail her at email@example.com.