Conversations #3: Online Friends are Real Friends too

12:46 Cilla P 4 Comments


Conversations is a new meme created by Geraldine and Joan to encourage more discussions in the book blogging community. Every fortnight, they post a question to respond to. Every fortnight, they post a question to respond to. I thought it would be fun and I'm looking forward to read everyone's response!

This week, the question is: Are real life friendships different from the ones you have online?


In 2009, I made a friend. We both love Harry Potter and writing, and generally got along well. While the closeness wasn't instant, it grew. Over the years, we've stayed at each other's houses, attended events together, and I was at her wedding and baby shower. She's one of my best friends. The fact that we met online doesn't change that. 

Here's another story: when I graduated high school, my group of five friends quite literally spread across the globe. We ended up in different parts of Australia, Asia, and America. For the majority of the last seven years, our friendships have been conducted online. 

These friendships in my life are the reasons I'm always stumped whenever I'm asked a question like this week's topic. I can't say that my real life friends are closer to me than my online friends. Some of them are, but not all. Sometimes that line between real life and internet doesn't exist, especially as the latter becomes more ubiquitous. 

The difference, perhaps, is the things that I share with them. With the friends I make through my schooling and work, I talk about exams, difficult issues at work, and generally things that are relevant to what we have in common. Same about online friends: I talk about specifics of blogging, books, and writing, because that's what we have in common. That's not unique to the real-life/online split though. I don't chat to my old colleagues about my thesis, or reminisce about ex-students with my friends from grad school; they would have absolutely no idea nor interest about what I'm talking about.

I guess my short answer to this topic is that the only difference between real life friendships and online ones is where they start. From that point on, you use your judgment about what's appropriate to share, you draw on common grounds to build a friendship and trust, no matter what medium or where you know the other person from. 


What do you think about this topic?

4 comments:

  1. Awww Cilla, I love your stance on this! I think I'm the same! I feel like I should probably be more reserved with online friends sometimes (stranger danger was grilled into me) but at the same time, ahh that line really does become more blurred the more you get to know someone online!
    Also - it's so cool how your friends have split up over the globe. Probably not great for meeting up and keeping in touch - but it's so good that you guys are still friends you know?? Friendship that lasts distances is awesome <3
    Thanks for participating in Conversations! <3

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    1. Omg stranger danger is always in the back of my mind too, and it's definitely there with people I don't talk on a regular basis!
      Haha, I know what you mean. It's hard keeping in touch when everyone in your group is in different timezones, but it's amazing when we all get together and still can pick up where we left off. :D
      Thanks for stopping by, Geraldine! <3

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  2. I love your post, Cilla! That is such a good answer! This is actually starting to be kind of true for me too in a way - I have friends from uni who've scattered too, so at the moment we are more online friends :p But also real life friends. I also feel really close to some friends I've made online even though we've never met!

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    1. Thanks Annika! Yess, I think the fact that there are now more opportunities for people to move internationally, the more likely the line between being real-life friends and online friends will get fuzzy. Plus we share so much of our lives online now that it makes sense that we'd make close friends online!

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Thanks for reading! It makes my day to hear your thoughts and I will respond asap. :)