Many people wonder about the question, “Are Lovers More Important Than Friends?” This is an important question that is difficult to answer, because lovers play a very different role in our lives than friends do. We have different emotions and expectations about our lovers than we have about our friends. The truth is, we need both kinds of relationships to be happy and fulfilled, and we should never think we have to choose between only having a lover or mate, or having friendships.
When we have a lover, particularly in the first early, intoxicating, stages of feeling head over heels in love, the intensity of our feelings for our lover is far more overwhelming than the feelings we have about our friends. At such a time, most of us would find it easy to say that a lover is far more important than any friendships we might have.
However, the reality is that, sooner or later, a lot of the very intense feelings we have of being madly in love will start to fade. When that happens, we will either develop a different kind of less intense, but long lasting emotional relationship with the person we have been in love with, or we will move on to find a different lover who inspires us with mad passion all over again.
If we have not maintained our friendships throughout our crazy romance, who will we have to turn to if the relationship falls apart, and our heart is broken? Who is going to be there to tell you, “That guy was never good enough for you.” Will the friends you have neglected for several months want to hear from you now that you are alone again? Chances are that if you dropped all your friends because you were in love, they have dropped you too because you were not a reliable friend.
It is much better to keep your friendships active even while you fall in love with somebody. Your friends can keep you grounded and stabilize you; they can offer you good advice.
Another reason to keep our friendships is because no one person can ever meet all our needs, or match all our interests. No matter how much you love your romantic partner, you need to have new outlooks and new perspectives. You need to be refreshed by outside influences.
Lovers and friends serve different purposes in our lives. A love relationship is usually more deep and more intense. It activates our most primal emotions, and gives us greater highs and deeper lows than our friendships. Our friendships are far more steady and consistent. They give us a different kind of security and validation, and they often last longer than our romantic partnerships.
Another good reason for maintaining our friendships is because there are many social skills and relationship skills we learn in our friendships that can be a big help in our romantic relationships. For many of us, friendships are the place where we learn about compromise and sharing. We learn about loyalty and discretion.
At some point, if your romantic relationship lasts, your lover will also become your friend. When that happens, if you haven’t learned how to be a good friend, your romantic relationship can die, either quickly, or slowly. By maintaining all your close friendships, you will keep building the emotional skills that make a long term romantic relationship healthier.
You don’t need to make a choice when you ask yourself, “Are lovers more important than friends?” You will be much happier if you hold on to your friendships no matter what is going on currently in your romantic life.