All About Friendship

Anais Nin put it beautifully when she said, "Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born." Though some natural loners are happy without them, most of us depend greatly on the company of true friends. As with any relationship, friendships bring support and joy and occasionally strife. Here's how to make friends, understand friendship better, and be a great confidante to others.

Recent posts on Friends

5 Ways to Spring Clean Your Social Media Clutter

The clocks will soon "spring forward" for many of us—that means it's a great time to prepare for the loss of an hour by streamlining your electronic social networks.


By Roberta Satow Ph.D. on February 22, 2017 in Life After 50
Do you find it difficult to say you're sorry?

Happy-Sad: Charity Fundraising, Grief, and Hope

These events are not called “Cycle for Loss” or “Into the Darkness” for a reason. They are focused on coming out of -- surviving -- something that can be devastating.

Feeling Friendless After Separation

By Irene S Levine Ph.D. on February 15, 2017 in The Friendship Doctor
Advice on dealing with separation from a long-time partner.

National Single Awareness Day Comes but Once a Year

By Frances Kuffel on February 14, 2017 in What Fat Women Want
Maybe it should be called National Single Undying-Gratitude Day.

A Conversation About Underage Drinking

It is silly to think that turning 21 makes one a responsible drinker. Knowledge, above all else, is the dividing factor, and education can start at any age.

10 Ways to Defuse the Hostility of People Who Are Angry

By Barbara Greenberg Ph.D. on February 12, 2017 in The Teen Doctor
We can all benefit from handling anger without responding in kind.

7 Ways to Own Your Success Without Sounding Narcissistic

It's OK to tell other people about your achievement. Here's how to do it without bragging.

How “Wanting to Be Liked" Gets You Rejected

5 ways to stop approval seeking and improve your relationships.

Why Do I Care What People Think?

By Kimberly Key on February 07, 2017 in Counseling Keys
Maslow said, "Sick people are made sick by a sick culture; healthy people are made possible by a healthy culture." Here's a test to help you discern your best road to health.

Constrained by Coupling: Your Friends Are Not Your Own

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on February 07, 2017 in Living Single
If you are coupled, it matters whether your partner likes your friends. What does that mean for the quality of single people’s friendships vs. coupled people’s?

5 Simple Steps to Better Relationships

By Mark Holder, Ph.D. on February 05, 2017 in The Happiness Doctor
Here are 5 simple and powerful ways to improve the quality of your relationships with family, friends and romantic partners starting right now.
Augustino / AdobeStock

Office Gossip: How to Make Sure It's NOT About You

If people didn’t behave badly at work, there’d be no such thing as office gossip. Here’s how to reduce your chances of being the subject.

6 Ways to Deal With an Insincere Suck-Up

Are you annoyed by a suck-up who just seems insincere and ingratiating? These 6 tips, based on new research on ingratiation, will help you tune in, and out, to their manipulation.

10 Ways to Deal With People When They Feel Miserable

By Barbara Greenberg Ph.D. on January 30, 2017 in The Teen Doctor
Learning to Deal With Miserable People Is A Necessary Skill

4 Ways to Stop Fearing the Judgments of Others

Let’s face it: Humans are always judging each other. Here are four ways to stop living in fear of judgment.'>akz

Between Friends: Sexuality in Women's Friendships

By F. Diane Barth L.C.S.W. on January 26, 2017 in Off the Couch
A young female client once asked me,“If I like to look at other women does it mean I’m gay? Or bi?” What is the answer to that question?

The Psychology of Profile Picture Selection

Personal profile pictures often display a glimpse of the arm of another person in them. This makes me wonder, "Why would people choose a picture with someone else in it?"

5 Ways to Ruin a Perfectly Good Relationship

Relationships that seem to be going well may, without your knowledge, be in trouble. New research on narcissism in relationships shows how to avoid the most common traps.

Brothers & Sisters: The Best Friends You Didn't Know You Had

Learning to get along as well as possible with your siblings can be the ultimate self-help gift as you grow older.

The Good and Bad of Friends

Friends, acquaintances, and family members are essential to our mental health. But some are helpful to a marriage and some are destructive.

Uncommon Tips for Demonstrating that You're a Good Listener

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on January 18, 2017 in Ambigamy
Listening isn't just a matter of opening our ears. Our ears are clogged with fear of losing status. But we gain more status by overcoming that fear.

Is This the Surprising Way Couples Will Become Less Insular?

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on January 18, 2017 in Living Single
The community that was creating and honoring “families of choice” long before the concept became broadly familiar may be the one to transform coupling.

From School Bullying to Feuding Parents

By Izzy Kalman on January 17, 2017 in Resilience to Bullying
There is a growing phenomenon of adults who used to be friends becoming enemies because of beliefs spread by the anti-bully movement.

How Couples Can Stay Friends When Politics Are So Hot

By Geoffrey Greif Ph.D. on January 17, 2017 in Buddy System
Helping to maintain couple friends when political views get overly heated.

15 Ways To Become Closer To Others

By Barbara Greenberg Ph.D. on January 16, 2017 in The Teen Doctor
These practices will help you get closer to the important people in your life.

52 Ways to Show I Love You: Sharing

7 ways we can share with someone we love, 8 mechanisms of how they work, and 9 explanations for why they are effective help us appreciate the power of this tool for showing love.

Friends of Teens with Eating Disorders Unsure Where to Turn

Without resources at school, with no one to turn to, teenagers struggle to begin the conversation about eating disorders among their peers.

What if You're Depressed or Anxious and Can't Find Help?

By F. Diane Barth L.C.S.W. on January 06, 2017 in Off the Couch
"Friendship Benches" offer a new tool in the fight against depression and anxiety.

Childhood Friendships Influence Both Fear and Fearlessness

By Christopher Bergland on December 28, 2016 in The Athlete's Way
A first-of-its-kind study reports that close childhood friends can make one another more or less afraid of ambiguous threats depending on how they frame fear-based thinking.