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Searching for Friendship 2013 – A Year-End Review

Published: January 1, 2014 | Last Updated: January 28, 2022 By | 8 Replies Continue Reading
Happy New Year 2014

Happy New Year 2014

Some information, statistics and insights—and my wish for each of you for the New Year

When we are struggling with any complex problem—whether it’s medical, emotional, or social—it’s natural to think we are the only ones grappling with it. But when people read, share and learn from the experiences of others, they suddenly realize they aren’t alone.  Not only is that recognition reassuring, it is also empowering.

At the end of the year, I like to provide a bit of feedback to visitors who have shared, commented, lurked (which isn’t a bad thing!), alerted me to spammers, occasional web-hosting outages, and supported me (and each other) in so many ways. Here is a brief report:

Visitors to The Friendship Blog

In 2013, the blog received about 1.6 million views from people from 16,299 cities, in 190 countries, across five continents.

In terms of numbers of visitors to the blog this year, the top ten countries in 2013 were:  the US, the UK, Canada, Australia, India, the Philippines, Singapore, Ireland, Malaysia, and New Zealand.

More than half of visitors found the blog through search engines; the remainder were referred by friends or found it after reading my blog posts and articles on FacebookHuffington PostPsychology Today, and other publications.

About 35 percent of visitors accessed the site on their mobile devices and 11 percent on tablets, which comes as no surprise. More and more people are relying on smartphones and tablets.

The site has maintained an impressive Google Page Rank of 4.

At a Glance

There are 1429 posts on the blog that have received almost 16,00o comments. An additional 8500 comments have been posted on the Forums.

Some 212 new posts were published this year, about four per week. (Whew!)

Since I receive far more emails from visitors asking for advice than I am able to respond to, I try to answer as many as I possibly can that offer teachable lessons for others while making an effort not to repeat (too often) the themes of previous posts.

This year, several guest contributors have helped me craft responses. I’m appreciative to friendship expert Carlin Flora and psychologist Amy Feld.

As of today, there are 1479 regular subscribers to my weekly newsletter that provides links to new posts.

More than 100 readers have joined The Friendship Blog Connection on Facebook to communicate with each other.

Searching for Friendship: 5 Most Popular Friendship Posts

The 5 most popular posts on the Friendship Blog that most resonated with readers:

Media Interest

Media interest in the topic of friendship has consistently remained high. This year again, I was interviewed by scores of media outlets, both print and electronic—here in the US and internationally.

I was especially pleased to be interviewed by Marlo Thomas (That Girl!) and Rita Braver of CBS Sunday Morning.

Why People Visit The Friendship Blog

The top posts (many written years ago) were read over and over again during 2013. Collectively, they suggest the reasons why people visit this blog:

1) To learn how to deal with difficult friends,

2) To understand and find ways to address the loneliness of having no friends

3) To find ways to end toxic friendships,

4) To learn new strategies for making friends,

5) To find ways to mend failed friendships, AND

6) To share what they’ve learned about friendship with others

3 Things You Can Do to Nurture The Friendship Blog and Your Friendships:

  • Continue to contribute your experiences and ideas.
  • Tell your friends about the blog.  Share, tweet, retweet, and stumble links to posts – including this one.
  • Subscribe to monthly blog updates and follow my friendship updates on Twitter.

My Wish for You

Wishing everyone who reads this blog every good wish for the coming year: May your life be filled with happiness, peace, good health and rewarding friendships.

The understanding and compassion of the readers of this blog — who come from all walks of life, from all around the globe, and who have had widely varying experiences – have truly enhanced my own life and that of others. I’m always touched by your wisdom and kindness.

On a Personal Note

I’m appreciative of the tech support from my talented Aussie webmaster Chris Richardson of RTW Labs, who helps maintain the site and Laura E. Kelly who was so helpful with the redesign last year.

Thanks, too, to Jacqueline Rodgers of Canada who keeps a watchful eye on the site to make sure it’s running smoothly.

As a reminder, especially for those who may not read the About section, this blog is an unpaid, but very personally rewarding labor of love, that draws upon my training as a psychologist; the experience and skills I honed during a long career in public mental health; and the survey research entailed in writing my book, Best Friends Forever: Surviving a Breakup you’re your Best Friend.

The time I can devote to the blog is limited because I only “moonlight” as “The Friendship Doctor” while I work as a freelance travel journalist for a number of newspapers, magazines and websites—which also entails time away from home and my desktop.

(If you are interested in travel, I hope you’ll visit my travel website MoreTimeToTravel.com, subscribe to the weekly newsletter, and follow my musings on travel on Twitter.)

With every good wish for 2014!

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Comments (8)

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  1. Carol O. says:

    Dear Irene,

    As I make a decision to move on, I take with me all I have experienced while being on your site. I am at a time in my life when I truly believe our most powerful gifts in life lay in no authority other than our own personal life stories. Our histories, if we take the time to look back and study them, bring our both loss and finging of friendships and the ones short-lived but memorable for their gifts that last forever. I like a quote by Queen Elizabeth, “Keep Calm and Carry On” If there is any one state of mind I have searched for in my life, it is to know how to remain calm. If I can do this when embracing a disappointment or great grief, then I will always be able to carry on.

    In a very short time, I feel connected to you as you use your gifts and talents to bring people together to help each other. Human beings such as you remind us all there is a place for us on the planet and others want to connect. I remember still a third grade boy who, like me, came from poverty. We were exchanging gifts for Christmas and he had my name. When I opened the gift, it was a spoon, knife and fork, most likely from his kitchen at home. There was an immediate moan from the other kids, but from my teacher came, “Oh Carol, Robert brought you a gift from his family!” Suddenly, Robert invited me, with his gift, into a long-time friendship with him. At 75, he is a part of my history and someone I consider a continuing gift of friendship, remaining in my heart all these years later.

    May all who come to your site find the helpful gifts I have found in friendships all along my journey of living.

    With great respect, Carol O.

  2. Lovey says:

    I live in NYC and I am just looking to make friends.

  3. jacqueline says:

    This blog is part of my daily routine! Irene has done an amazing job helping others, including myself! xox

  4. Carol says:

    It’s a worthwhile use of my time to share some of my friendships that are no longer on the planet anymore. I was remembering all the stores from yesterday on the blog. while soothing my ache body with a hot shower this morning. It’s a promise I made to my aging body, give it a good start for the day. In particular I remembered Linda, a sister hospice worker and one who became such an amazingly helpful and loving friend to me during hard times. She was much wiser than I at the time, but of course I didn’t recognize her qualities at the time. We had a huge falling out and for the life of me I cannot even remember over what! One day I just went to her office at Home Hospice and we both saw each other and began to cry in each others arms. We then made a date for she and her husband and myself and my partner to have dinner when she returned from a Christmas visit to her family in Connecticut. About a week into the visit, a received a call in the middle of the night from another friend that she had been murdered while hiking in a local park. Most likely she reached out to help someone and it was a very sick person she was offering her heart.

    I will never forget the pain that surrounded my life for a very long time. But along with the pain I kept hearing her last words to me which were: “Carol, I love you and nothing can stop love if you give it a chance.” She was right and the last words she left me help me every day of my life all these years later. It is a gift to enter into relationships with others, whether it last for a week or for years, we just never know until we unwrap the box if it is a disappointment or a delight that we never want to let go of. I still hold on to who Linda was and is in my life.


  5. i am always impressed with all of your endeavors, Irene, and so was not surprised by the numbers you talked about above. You are a gem of a person and I am glad to know you and be an avid read of both of your blogs.

    Here’s to a friendship filled 2014. Best of everything to you.


    • Irene says:


      You and your blog are nothing short of inspirational to me and many others. Thanks for stopping by~

      Best, Irene

  6. Chris says:

    It’s been my pleasure to help out with your site this year Irene. I have watched its grow exponentially as a resource for others which sure has taxed your server and myself at times but I wouldn’t have had it any other way. All the best for 2014!!

  7. Sheryl says:

    Congratulations on such an impressive, helpful & insightful labor of love!

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