7 Golden Rules of Friendship We All Learned From ‘Friends’

Becca Van Sambeck
Becca is a recent Fordham grad, a former German beer hall girl, and a new Brooklyn resident who used to read the dictionary for fun as a kid. She has only gotten slightly less lame since then. She loves pugs, chicken fingers, reading and Game of Thrones.

The much loved sitcom Friends taught us so much: “How you doin?” is an effective pickup line with the right inflection, Jennifer Aniston is a goddess and should be worshipped as such, and of course, the importance of close friends as we grow up. Friends naturally had a lot to say about, well, friends, and can offer a lot of guidance for navigating our own friendships as we get older. You Eat That Beef Trifle Rachel’s friends were horrified at Thanksgiving when she mixed up her recipes and baked a trifle for dessert-with beef and peas and onions inside. But they knew she was so proud of cooking that trifle-shephard’s pie hybrid they attempted to eat it anyway. That’s right, they ate a shepherd’s pie trifle. Sometimes you’ve got to do things you don’t want to do to make your friend happy. And chances are it’s not as disgusting as that trifle.

You Can Date A Friend (If They’re Your Lobster)Traditionally, the rule is to avoid dating a close friend-it can be so messy if you break up! What do you do about all the mutual friends? But as Friends points out, that rule is meant to be broken-if, as Phoebe so eloquently put it-they are indeed your lobster. There might be tough times ahead, but sometimes there’s no better person for you than your friend as Rachel and Ross, as well as Monica and Chandler proved.

It Is Important To Know Your Friend’s Job

Remember when Rachel and Monica lost trivia to Chandler and Joey, all because they had no idea what job he had? They lost their beautiful, huge, completely unrealistic apartment to the guys! You need to listen to your friends, and care about what’s going on in their lives. You never know when it’ll cost you the apartment.


You Don’t Turn Your Back On A Friend

Joey and Chandler bravely tried to pee on Monica after she was stung by a jellyfish. It was horrifying, but they wanted to help her when she was in pain. When bad times happen, you don’t abandon your friend, no matter how tempting it is to run ahead on the beach.

You Don’t Let Crushes Get In the Way Of Friendships
Joey was so pissed at Chandler, when his girlfriend Kate dumped him to be with Chandler. It was a total betrayal, but Joey got over it, especially after Chandler sat in a box for hours to prove his devotion. Sometimes, romantic rivalry happens between friends. It completely sucks, but it doesn’t spell doom. Friends find a way to make it up to each other, and prove whose most important.
Friends Don’t Always Equal Roommates, And That’s Okay
Many of the gang lived together-Monica and Rachel lived for much of the show together, as did Monica and Chandler, but many of the roommate situations were less ideal. Phoebe hated living with neat freak Monica, and Ross annoyed the hell out of Joey and Chandler when they let him crash following his divorce. It can be hurtful hearing a friend doesn’t want to live with you, but it doesn’t mean they don’t love you-some people just aren’t meant to spend time in a small space with each other 24/7.

Big Life Changes Don’t Spell The End of A Friendship
One of the worst parts of growing up is moving away from your closest friends. Unfortunately, as you get older and start jobs and serious relationships, you can’t always stay neighbors with your best friends, stopping by whenever you want a sandwich. However, Friends thoughtfully showed that no major life change-having a baby, getting married, moving to the suburbs-spelled the end of a friendship. Joey still got his own room in Monica and Chandler’s house. (Although, if they were really great friends, they would’ve given him that giant, rent-controlled apartment. People would murder for the chance to have an apartment like that in New York today!) A real friendship endures these changes, even if it is a little bit more work.