Well, lookie here. Another New York Times’ Style section article about a “lifestyle trend” that’s sweeping the nation. The topic? De-friending. Not just online. IRL. I know. Groundbreaking, right? It’s no secret that people drift apart, or lose commonalities. But OK, maybe there’s a point here. The internet has given us an abnormal saturation of friendships and it’s not as evident as to how to get rid of them or even deal with them. Maybe because half the time you can avoid face-to-face confrontation.
I imagine once upon a time, there was just a number of people you knew. Floating out there with few actual ties to you. Now they’re all “friends,” which you need to arrange according to categories. One social media expert, in trying to whittle down his circle, found that his “solution was to divide his social base into two categories: ‘linear’ friends (lasting relationships based on a deep connection) and ‘nonlinear’ (situational friends based only on shared past experience, like an old job).”
This idea made an impact on me, especially because I had recently attempted to do this as sort of a mental exercise in an attempt to evaluate which connections were really important to me. But I found myself unable to create just two or three categories. There were the “friends who are always up to party” the “friends from college I still hang out with,” the “friends from college I sometimes keep in touch with,” the “friends who prefer to socialize by dining out” and the “friends who prefer to chill on a couch.”
I’m guessing I’m not the only one out there who has these secret labels for some of their buddies. What are yours? Or do you find your friends are fairly clear-cut into groups?