Have you ever felt like you’re a bad friend?
Like you simply aren’t putting in enough effort into your friendships, or that you’re just being an annoyance your friends are better off without.
But hold it—you’re probably just overthinking.
In fact, if you have these qualities, you might actually be an incredibly loyal friend.
1) You pick up their calls (even if it’s 3am)
Sure, you might get annoyed if those calls come at an exceptionally inconvenient time, and you do have your boundaries. But you simply can’t bear to just ignore your friends.
So you always make sure to answer, even if they come calling late at night or in the middle of a date.
Besides, you trust your friends not to bother you at a bad time unless it’s for something especially important, and you wouldn’t want to end up turning down a potential life-saving emergency call.
Because of this, your closest friends and family consider you a godsend.
2) You only have good things to say about them
That’s not to say that your friends don’t have flaws or that you’re ignoring or even blind to these flaws. No human is perfect after all.
Rather, whenever you’re talking about your friends, you won’t feel any desire to bring up their flaws, even if to whine about them jokingly.
And this holds true even if the two of you are currently not on good terms.
You just love and respect them so much that the last thing you ever want to do is to talk about them behind their back.
3) You don’t share their secrets (not even to your S.O!)
Whenever your friends open up to you about their private struggles and secrets, they can be sure that whatever they have told you will never get shared.
Your lips are sealed, and not even your own partner or spouse trying to guilt you into spilling the tea will make you betray their trust.
You don’t even have to wait for them to tell you “please don’t share this”—you will automatically assume that what they tell you in private is meant to be kept private.
If you do feel like you must share something they said, then you will first try to ask for their permission. And it’s only once you’ve gotten explicit permission that it’s okay to share will you actually do so.
4) You try to be there whenever you can
Loyalty isn’t really just about always picking someone’s side, or being always willing to hear them out.
It’s also about being present for them when it matters the most.
You’re there for them whenever they call for you. You’re there on their wedding day, their divorce, their graduation, and even their deathbed.
And when life has somehow kept you too busy from being there in the moment, you will try to do your best to catch up afterwards. But in the meantime, you’d send them a heartfelt message and a gift.
5) You’re genuinely proud of them
And when I say genuine, I do mean genuine.
When your friends are happy, you share in their joy, too—100%.
Now, this isn’t easy to do. Sure, it’s easy to be genuinely happy for someone else when you’re already happy and successful yourself. But if you’re poor, struggling, and getting nowhere in life, it’s anything but easy.
Your friends’ successes slowly become painful (even insulting) to you and you’d start to ask the heavens “But what about me?!”
And yet you manage to be genuinely happy for your friends regardless of how hard your life is.
So when you see your friend win that promotion they’ve always deserved, you cheer for them with all your heart. You aren’t clapping while gritting your teeth thinking “That should have been me” or “Just you wait!”
6) You’ll fight for your friends
Your friends can trust that whenever they’re in need, you’re not just going to turn around and desert them.
Which is not to say you’re going to blindly defend them when they’re the ones at fault, of course—you’re not a get-out-of-jail card and they know that.
But they know that if people come for them and you know they simply don’t deserve it, you’re willing to fight tooth and nail for your friends.
And as much as you are personally capable, you will try to give them comfort. The last thing you want is to see them crying and hurt. You share in their pain and do everything you can to make things better.
7) You tell them the truth
You might not want to see your friends in pain, but you understand that sometimes, in order to be a good friend, you have to be the one to make them cry.
And you’re perfectly willing to bear the consequences for it too, even if it can cause a change in your relationship.
Perhaps their breath reeks, and you know they’re about to go on a date…so you will pull them aside and tell them they might need to brush their teeth first before they go.
Or maybe you saw their boyfriend flirting with another girl, for example. So you try to find a time and place to break the news to them as gently as you can.
As far as you’re concerned, it’s better for them to hear it from you than a stranger.
8) You give them the benefit of the doubt
You aren’t going to immediately assume the worst when you catch your friend doing or saying something potentially suspicious.
When you hear that people are saying that your friend has been cheating on their partner, for example, you aren’t simply going to join the crowd and think badly about them.
Instead you’re going to see whether there’s any truth in the accusations and then try to listen to your friend’s side first.
Wrongful accusations happen all the time, after all, and sometimes people even go so far as to frame people in order to hurt them.
You’re a loyal friend who’d take your friend’s side especially if they’re not yet there to defend themselves.
9) You don’t threaten to end your friendship
That is to say, you’re not going to say “if you keep on arguing with me, I won’t ever talk to you again!” or “if you don’t unfollow my ex, then you’re not my friend anymore!”
You don’t ever threaten something if you aren’t willing to go ahead with it, and one thing you simply don’t have the heart to ever threaten is your friendship.
The very idea of manipulating your friends’ emotions to your benefit is something you find morally abhorrent. You’d rather just talk things through, try to find a compromise, and just handle things like adults.
Besides, you really don’t like to risk your friendship by acting immature. You value them so much that you’re willing to be the “bigger person” to keep your friendship.
10) You invest in the friendship
Friendships get harder to maintain over time, especially when life kicks in and puts us in different states, with jobs that keep us from hanging out with one another like we used to.
And yet despite all that, you go above and beyond to make sure your friendships remain vibrant and alive.
It doesn’t matter if you live miles apart, or if your job schedules don’t line up. You can just plan outings together when your schedules coincide, and you can always just message one another over the internet.
It might get exhausting and tricky, and yet you hold on to your friendships. You think they’re well worth it.
Being a loyal friend isn’t about sacrificing yourself for the sake of your friends, and neither does it mean blindly taking their side even if they’re clearly wrong.
It means that no matter what, you’ll do right by your friends— always looking out for them, respecting their boundaries, and doing your best to be there for them even if that means dealing with them with a bit of tough love every now and then.