Who Are Your Real Friends?

Might it be your own kids?

Click here if you are unable to view this video.
See More

Comments (26)

(25) SusanE, January 31, 2014 2:07 AM

Friends and Family

My husband told our kids when they were small..."Your Mother is the best friend you will ever have, and you can always go to her for anything" . - - - - I thought it was nice but didn't realize the importance of that statement.. I would hope that the kids see me as a Mother first and then as a friend who they can, as adults, respect. and confide in. I have my non-family friends from 25 years ago to do things with. Do you still have those friends around? I still enjoy being with them and they are my good old friends. My mom and dad had their own friends, my husband and I had our own friends, and so do my children. I enjoy the company of my children, they are interesting and fun. I love seeing what they are doing and hearing their stories.. But I don't think they are my best friends. I'll have to think on this and read the other comments for a while longer. Thanks Rabbi for something to think about. Susie

(24) Anonymous, January 30, 2014 10:46 PM

My husband of course!~

Whoa! Am I the only person in this site who would rather hang out with my spouse than anyone else the world? My kids are great - but their worldview is different, they have very different perspectives on many issues important to me and they certainly have different ideas of fun pastimes. I talk to my kids frequently, and see then when they have time, but for relaxing times to hang out, I'll chose my husband every time.

(23) Anonymous, September 5, 2012 2:30 AM

no no no and no

as much as I would love to be "friends" with my children (ages 14 to 28), It becomes a problem after a while. You see, when a friend sees you do something wrong, they will do everything possible not to hurt your feelings. Children who think they are "friends" criticize constantly and think they know everything and the mom is the dummest person on earth. No, thank you. I want my children to be able to have a fun conversation with me and we can go out together and have a wonderful time, but they have to know where to draw the line. There is no discussion when it comes to RESPECT.

(22) Liane Kramer, September 4, 2012 6:58 PM

My best friends? absolutely......our kids!!

who knows us better? who loves us more? with whom do we have more in common? who do we love more? As we get older, we cherish even more, time spent with our children, their spouses & ofcourse, their greatest gifts to us, our grandchildren.

(21) Ernest Miller, September 3, 2012 7:58 AM

Honestly, I am tied to my children a lot these days because of their children, my grandchildren. I don't view my children nor grandchildren so such as friends. They are more like associates! To me still a definition of a friend is one who is not related to me. I have many casual friends,but only a few close friends who I can confide in, listen to their problems, and offer advise,

(20) Ellen, September 2, 2012 6:52 AM

confusing friends & family

Like when my daughter says she only has one friend in her class, I correct her and say she has one "best friend" - a confidant, someone she can trust through and through. You yourself say there are limits to a friendship with kids - which says it all. It isn't enough to have only kids as friends. Friends are people you work on building trust and understanding. If you have a close relationship with your kids, then Baruch Hashem you did the family thing right, but your social circles should be wider than that, too. For everyone's benefit.

(19) Sam, September 2, 2012 6:45 AM

Sad Goal

I find what could be interpreted as a conclusion by this video to be a sad goal. While truly high level friendships are far from common, they do exist. And this is a most worthy goal. The story of David and Jonathan was given to us for a reason.

(18) Anonymous, September 2, 2012 1:40 AM

You're right on target! It's great having adult kids to relate to.

(17) Gabriel, August 31, 2012 12:28 AM

And vice versa

I am 17 years old and my parents are 2 of my best friends, including my brothers and sister. My parents taught me to have priorities in my life, and I established them as the most important. Other "friends" are so undependable and transient, dust in the wind. Family is forever

(16) Anonymous, August 30, 2012 3:51 AM

I agree my children are my best friends I talk to my daughter and son every morning on our way to work and my daughter and I talk everyafternoon after work. I have shared this friendship with my own mother who today is 91 years and we speak once to twice a week as she lives in SA.

(15) Anonymous, August 29, 2012 10:38 PM

Great, I agree w/ u 100%. My children are the best friends!

So nice of you to bring it up. So many parents let go of their children . They move away & are very lonely @the end of their lives. Good point

(14) Margie, August 29, 2012 5:57 PM

MyFamily

What is a friend to us? If it's someone you can confide with, have fun with , and be serious with...that will be my husband. But before I met him, my Best Friend is my Mom and Dad, and they still are. My husband and I don't have kids, so now I hang out mostly with my nephews and nieces for fun, although they sometimes come to us for more serious matters. And that's how I define friends. They are family. Friends are those people you love, you care about and with whom you have a true connection whether for good or for bad, you all come together. Thank you Rabbi for a meaningfl message message.

(13) Anonymous, August 29, 2012 5:40 PM

It may not always be healthy for parents to be best friends with their children. We can of course do our best to maintain certain boundaries, however, it still can put a bit of a burden on our children at times. But, that being said, my daughter and I are best friends. We understand that first and always I am her parent, and as such, will guide her in a way that I think best for her present and future, whether she likes it or not. However, she is so kind and amazing and wise of an individual, that I can't help but to admire her and 99% of her decisions, and the way she looks at the world. I trust her with anything in life, more than anyone. In fact, I've wondered if it is possible to get her (legally) to be an emancipated minor for the purpose of being able to handle various legal matters. (Handling trusts decisions, medical decisions, financial matters, etc, should I become incapable.) There is no one else that comes close to my trusting them to make as wise decisions with all that, as her. Hopefully G... will help my family and me live an extremely long, healthy, good life, so that this won't matter for quite a long time.

(12) Anonymous, August 29, 2012 9:32 AM

I absolutely agree with you. There is no one in the world that would care for you and understand you more than your grown kids. It sure does give me joy to be with my kids

(11) Sara, August 29, 2012 7:23 AM

One friend you forgot to mention

What about your spouse. Isn't he/she supposed to be your best friend?

(10) Anonymous, August 29, 2012 6:28 AM

Technology has manifested the worst behaviors in people

You may have 1,000 friends on Facebook but how many of them are your actual friends? Social graces seemed to be lost in this generation. The only people who really care about you are your immediate family. I would agree that my husband is my true bff (best friend forever).

(9) sarah, August 29, 2012 3:41 AM

I am amazed but delighted to hear that there are people who still relate to their children and that their children relate to them. I agree that this is a special connection that should cherished and valued.

Joyce, August 29, 2012 5:05 PM

my daughters were and will always be my greatest treasures but now, as adults, they're also my best friends

(8) Debra, August 29, 2012 2:32 AM

Definitly agree

Dear Rabbi, Im so glad you brought up the subject. Friends over the years will come and go and as the old saying goes Blood is thicker then water. So true. I love my adult children as my friends. We talk and laugh and enjoy each others company. I have 4 children. 2 Girls and 2 boys. I like to spend indiviual time with each and each time is great. We laugh, we confide in one another. Yes, you have to draw the line between children and frienship, but wherer does that line start. Hopefully commen sense and good parenting skills should tell you. I love my children and they are my best friends.

(7) Baruch, August 28, 2012 7:43 PM

Best friends & Chavrusas = Peers

ON the one hand, it is true that the friendlier the relationship I have with a parent, spouse, child, rabbi, teacher, chavrusa or friend, the better. On the other hand, as we learn from Jonathan and David, the closest "friendship" is potentially with someone who has the classic attributes of a friend - that is, they are a peer in similar shoes. I want to be close friends with my adult kids, but I want to be closest friends with someone who is where I am at in life. Similarly, I love my parents, but the Torah spells out that we leave our parents to cling to our spouse. A spouse does not detract from my love for my parents, but it is meant to be the higher love. I want to spend MORE TIME with my kids than with my best friend. I want to TALK to my kids more than my friends. NOTWITHSTANDING, to me, a best friend is still a PEER (and/or chavrusa) with whom I can share things that just will not sync up with people that I love but are simply not "in the same shoes." Surrounded by family, my life may be full of a wonderful atmosphere of closeness and friendship, but something big is still missing.

(6) Anonymous, August 28, 2012 6:19 PM

My Mom and I were always so close; grandparents too...

But sadly, none of ours seem to desire our company much. We have tried our best, and part of our situation is our coming to the TORAH path in the last decade...which none of them want...so different holidays, etc. which does not help. We knew that there would be a cost, but we hoped not so much as this. But we are continuing on, doing our best with HaShem's help. We no longer expect any changes; how does one recover lost time? And relationships take time. For us, our children do not have time. We made many sacrifices for them when they were growing up, including Dad taking a lesser paying job to be with them more, learning to ski in his 40's so they could learn too, and my homeschooling them...I do not feel we shorted them. We did not have a perfect home, and living the Torah path then would certainly have been good, but we were in church, and did what we knew. I do think DNA plays a great part in how children turn out too...though when we were raising them, it never even entered my head that we would be where we are today. We love them. But we are going on now, even moving farther away...maybe things will change, but if not, we still have life and it needs to be lived well yet. No, we are not at war with any of them...they are just so distant...

(5) carla mcbride, August 28, 2012 5:18 PM

my adult children are my friends

You hit the nail on the head for me! My adult children are by far my best friends in this world!

(4) richard, August 28, 2012 5:03 PM

Yes, Rabbi, you are right!

Thank you Rabbi. You have confirmed a viewpoint that I have promoted for years. I often say that getting your children and grandchildren to relate to you as A FRIEND above their natural relationship, means you have succeeded in building a connection that will remain a source of constant encouragement throughout their lives. If they respect you only because they "have to" because you are their parent/grandparent, they may run away from it when they can. If they know you as their FRIEND, they will learn from you and show their love for you because that's how you treat friends.

(3) Suzanne, August 28, 2012 2:24 PM

Yes, Rabbi, I agree with you

It's turned out to be that way for me, too. My husband and my grown kids are my best friends as well as my original family i.e., my father (when he was alive) and my mother and my brothers and sisters. It's not that I don't have friends that are not related to me, I certainly do and they have enriched my life immeasurably - it's just when push comes to shove, I know my family are the ones I can always count on. It's interesting isn't it, this thing we call the family i.e., how G_d created man and then woman and then together they have children? This physical bringing together is very powerful and I think G_d meant it to be that way as he understood that an individual needs a core group of people to sustain him. It's a shame how much this concept (of a strong family life) has eroded these days, too. It shows in the culture we have as it's true that families are the very building blocks of society.

(2) Amy weiser, August 28, 2012 2:12 AM

I agree with you 100%. Growing up, my son had a low self esteem because school was not easy and things came hard for him. School is highly pressurized these days and they only dwell on marks. Your speech should be heard by teachers and principals. Thank You

(1) Cheryll, August 28, 2012 12:29 AM

Definitely

I have always felt that my grown children are my friends. Both of my parents were my good friends throughout my life until they passed. When there is a necessity to have to make a decision between being their friend or their parent I will still take on the task of parenting first and foremost. But otherwise, they are truly my friends and I can count on them and vice versa.

 

Submit Your Comment:

  • Display my name?

  • Your email address is kept private. Our editor needs it in case we have a question about your comment.


  • * required field 2000
Submit Comment
stub

Receive the Aish.com Weekly Email

Sign up to our Aish Weekly Update Jewsletter.

Our privacy policy