There’s a new term making the rounds among young women everywhere. “Besties”. It’s supposed to be slang for best friends. I am convinced that this new “word” is ruining friendships. As a side note, I apologize to all females because I will be picking on your gender for the duration of this post. Please forgive me. I don’t hear men use the word bestie, and if I did, I would have to dedicate an entirely separate post to instruct them on what words should never be used in their daily vernacular.
When I was a kid, we had best friends. I remember my best friend as a teenager. His name was Matt. His name is still Matt. He’s not dead. We were tight. We rocked. We played baseball and football, went camping, built a tree fort , and drew letters with gasoline in a field and lit them on fire for airplane pilots to see. It was awesome. He has since moved away, but we’ll always be friends.
Just about everybody had a best friend growing up. If you didn’t, then now you hate me for rehashing that horrible time in your life and I apologize. For everyone else, I’m sure we all remember that one guy or girl that was definitively referred to as your best friend. Those were good times.
Then one day someone thought it would be cute to abbreviate best friend with bestie. What a jerk. I dislike that person strongly (my mom won’t let me use the word “hate”). You see, it would have been totally ok if people continued to use the word bestie as a reference to their best friend, but instead people (and by people, I mean strictly girls) have been a little bit too loose in its usage and destroyed the meaning of friendship.
Nowadays, girls are referring to every single female they’re friends with as their bestie. Every. Single. One. Whether it’s someone they have been friends with for years or someone they just recently added on facebook, they’re all besties now.
I believe that the introduction of the word “bestie” is an indication that the modern American culture has shifted from having one close friend as the norm to multiple quasi-close friends being the norm. The influx of social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and the consequential compiling of “friends” or “followers” over the internet has seeped from the virtual world to the real world. Because young Americans have hundreds of “friends” digitally, they’re subconsciously allowing it to happen with face-to-face relationships as well.
Let me enlighten you to what the problem is. There is a fundamental difference between having a best friend and having a bestie. Referring to a group of girls as “my besties” doesn’t make each of these females a best friend to the girl. It instead makes each one of them merely a semi-close friend. None of them are truly the “best” friend. Robin Thicke would agree with me that the use of bestie has inadvertently blurred the lines between acquaintance and friend, as well as between friend and best friend. You can’t tell the difference anymore.
I love that someone considers me their best friend. It makes me feel special and wanted. I’m privy to information no one else is. I’m someone’s go-to person for when they need advice or encouragement. I’m their first choice to share amazing news or an incredible experience. If I were merely a bestie, I’d be one of multiple options. Knowing my luck, I’d probably be 4th or 5th down the line of 4 or 5 besties. The specialness (is that a word?) would be gone. And that’s kind of depressing.
My girlfriend has a best friend. She has resisted the societal pressure to have besties. Christine has a wonderful friendship with a woman with whom she can tell anything and share everything. It’s heartwarming to see and I know that it will last for a very long time. That friendship will certainly be going strong long after this bestie thing has died off. And above all, her having a best friend shows me that there’s hope for humanity after all (I am so dramatic).
How about you? Do you have besties? Are you totally ok with it? Comment below!