I think if the word "friend" had a price tag attached to it, maybe folks wouldn't be so quick to toss the title around so casually. With that in mind, I'd love to say MY friend circle is small and intimate...but once I realized my bridesmaid list would either be one or 10 (not including the couple guys I also wanted to add to the groom's side)...I accepted that my insider circle may be intimate...but one thing it ain't is small. So I'm not pointing fingers, I get that we all have our personal cool kids club...but I'm just saying...some people definitely DO NOT need to have a membership card.
1) Exes. This includes any relationship that progressed beyond high-five homies. I mean really, what good are they to you now?? Unless I missed the memo that NEW relationships require references and background checks, being friends with an ex is a disaster waiting to happen. In case you don't believe me, 94% of women who "befriend" their ex take twice as long to move onto a new relationship. Ok, I made that up, but if you can be such great friends, why can't you make the relationship work? (I bet money you'll ask yourself that at least once in the "we're just friends now" stage.)
2) People who don't check on/call YOU. Now I don't mean occasionally, I mean NEVER. If you're sick, lost your job, lost a family member and they aren't there to make sure you're needing a ride to the ER, naked on a rooftop, or crying in the closet...they are no longer in the club. Deactivate their membership immediately. I know, you give great advice and they rely on you...NEED you. However, look at it this way, we all need to hear our own good advice periodically. If you always share the good stuff with folks that aren't ever around when YOU need to hear it, you're wasting your breath.
3) Someone you'd otherwise date that is currently in a relationship. Um hello? Can you say t-o-r-t-u-r-e? AND, not only is karma a mutha, but God forbid a hot, intelligent, down to earth, charming woman like yourself be-all-"friendin" up (yes, made that up) on your man (when you finally find him)! No indeed. Now usually these friendships start out honest, but after a while either you will end up frustrated, foolish or just f-ed up for interfering with someone else's relationship. If you are SO sure that the big picture is the story of your destined love together, then surely you can let her have ONE chapter without meddling. It makes for a better story anyway. *kanye shrug*
4) Someone that wants to date you, that you don't want to date. Now that's just mean. We all deserve a loyal fan...but it's just not right. In the process you will probably end up ruining someone that would otherwise be a great match for someone else. Play with it if you like, and one day that loyal fan may be you. Did I mention the long work hours and no benefits?
All too often we allow ourselves to be entangled in the facade of platonic relationships with hopes of "one day." Occasionally we may even protect our own vulnerability by hiding behind unavailable options. Pause for the cause, and figure out what you really need in your relationships, and communicate accordingly. No fronting. Hopefully then, when you do call out for a friend, (s)he is exactly what you need.