• Other Friendship Advice

In the Media – Friendship styles when socializing (Wall Street Journal)

Published: January 11, 2016 | Last Updated: January 13, 2016 By | 1 Reply Continue Reading

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Screenshot (Wall Street Journal)

Screenshot (Wall Street Journal)

In The Wall Street Journal, Elizabeth Bernstein writes about differences in friendship styles in an article entitled, “Friendship Advice: When Your Best Friend Brings a Crowd.”

She discusses two types of individuals: “focusers,” who prefer to see friends one-on-one and “diffusers,” for whom the more the merrier. When friends have different styles, it can inadvertently lead to conflicts and misunderstandings.

She suggests that differences in friendship styles may be related to the way we related to our parents as young children. It seems that differences in temperament may also come into play.

The article includes a comment from Dr. Levine:

Be prepared to compromise.

“Friends may need to give in to each other’s styles at times for the sake of the friendship,” says Irene S. Levine, a clinical professor of psychiatry at New York University School of Medicine and author of “Best Friends Forever: Surviving a Breakup with Your Best Friend.”

Bernstein also includes an interesting anecdote from her own personal life, based on an experience with a friend who invited her to dinner and then wanted to bring along a co-worker.

You can read the article in its entirety in The Wall Street Journal.

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  1. Tanja says:

    I am a focuser. I always liked one on one better. Could be that I am a twin and that is why I feel that way. A friendship did break up because she was a diffuser and I was not but there was more to it. Was not a lot of respect for our different styles. If it was high school i would have been the “geek” according to her.

    Oh well…..we are all different.

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