Understanding the psychology of friendship

Some friendships begin easily, especially when people are thrown together in social or professional spheres.

But are those the kinds of friends you can rely on in times of need?

Dr Schomer says the most important thing in friendship is the ability to keep confidence. Loyalty, support, affection and warmth, honesty and frankness are also important factors.

He identifies the four layers of friendship:

  • The nucleus - a tight core group

  • The inner circle - these are the go-to people for fun, advice, support and empowerment

  • The peripheral group - these are friends you see in one particular setting, such as religious services, school or at work

  • The acquaintances - people you know in a friendly way but who are not your actual friends.

We need to understand that the transition from acquaintanceship to friendship is typically characterised by an increase in both the breadth and depth of self disclosure

Dr Helgo Schomer, resident psychologist

Dr Schomer says the maintenance of friendship is very important as we go through the different phases in life. He says who are the friends who will stick by you through big life events like death, marriage, parenthood and divorce.

The willingness of both parties to confide in each other usually determines how close the friendship is. 'If I tell you something private about my life, will you trust me with yours?'

The central part of our friendship are the friends that support our social identity

Dr Helgo Schomer, resident psychologist

Listen to the full conversation below:

Read More
Why laughter is good for mental health

Why laughter is good for mental health

A sense of humour is key to a balanced life and good mental health. Dr. Schomer talks about the liberating effect of laughter.

Technobyte: Find out about the future of Facebook

Technobyte: Find out about the future of Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook manifesto draws strong criticism, a Uber-like drone to fly in Dubai and we review the Huawei Mate 9.

Does God exist? A debate

Does God exist? A debate

Eusebius McKaiser hosted a heated debate on God's existence with atheist Jacques Rousseau and believer Mahlatse Winston Mashua.

Eusebius McKaiser: Where the hell were you in the making of JZ, Mathews Phosa?

Eusebius McKaiser: Where the hell were you in the making of JZ, Mathews Phosa?

Eusebius McKaiser uses Open Line to send a message to former ANC Treasury who has recently urged Zuma to step down.

8 physical effects of sweeping your pain under the rug

8 physical effects of sweeping your pain under the rug

There are long-term physical and psychosocial repercussions if you don't forgive people who've hurt you and still hold on to pain.

You can replace Gordhan with a dog and it would do as good a job - senior journo

You can replace Gordhan with a dog and it would do as good a job - senior journo

Financial journalists Duma Gqubule and Sikhonathi Mantshantsha debate Brian Molefe's eligibility to head National Treasury.

Popular articles
NSFAS lady said to me I'll just be honest with you we don't have funds - caller

NSFAS lady said to me I'll just be honest with you we don't have funds - caller

You have until 28 February to challenge NSFAS funding rejection but callers say they've been rejected with no proper explanation.

How Airbnb has made renting in Cape Town even more pricey

How Airbnb has made renting in Cape Town even more pricey

Property management company PayProp argues that Airbnb has driven down rental availability and driven up rental prices in the CBD.

You can replace Gordhan with a dog and it would do as good a job - senior journo

You can replace Gordhan with a dog and it would do as good a job - senior journo

Financial journalists Duma Gqubule and Sikhonathi Mantshantsha debate Brian Molefe's eligibility to head National Treasury.

Brian Molefe's new ANC MP title will raise speculation -  Stephen Grootes

Brian Molefe's new ANC MP title will raise speculation - Stephen Grootes

Ex-Eskom boss Brian Molefe called it quits last year after his implication in the state capture report and is now headed to Parly.

Eek! Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille goes door-to-door to scold water-wasters

Eek! Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille goes door-to-door to scold water-wasters

Water wasters, beware! The Cape Town Mayor has had enough of you. And she’ll tell you in your face…

How to be happier (and more fulfilled) at your job (whatever it is)

How to be happier (and more fulfilled) at your job (whatever it is)

Bruce Whitfield interviews Debbie Goodman-Bhyat, author of “INtheFLOW – Taking Mindfulness to Work”.

3 emergency numbers you should have on speed dial and how they work

3 emergency numbers you should have on speed dial and how they work

These are the emergency numbers you should have on your cellphone and this is what you must understand about how they work.