Topic #193: How many friends can a person have? According to a theory called Dunbar’s number, we may have a maximum limit to how many people we can maintain relationships with – around 100 to 230 people. As the theory goes, our brains simply can’t manage more.
How many good or close friends do you think a person can have? What happens if they try to maintain more than that? Is there a fixed number, or are there things are person can do to be connected to more people? What about social networks like Facebook and Twitter?
I believe there is a definite number to the amount of friends that one can have. Having an excessive amount of relationships to maintain takes a lot of energy and thought. You have to maintain a separate but equal relationship with all. You have to remember the differences between people with the same names or same birthdays or same types of personal problems. This gets harder and harder to do as your circle of friends grow.
I think people typically do not have as many friends as they think they do. People generally confuse the difference between friends and acquaintances. There is a separation between the two as wide as the separation between church and state.
A friend is someone that is with you in your life when times get hard, not just the good moments. Your pain is their pain. They are there to talk you off that bridge instead of talking behind your back about how you were about to jump.
True friends are hard to come by. They might not always see eye to eye with you, they might even piss you off at times, but they are there for you always. Your best interest is their best interest and vice versa. They are the people we call late in the night and know they will pick up. How can you maintain this type of closeness with 230 people? The majority of people I know only have about 5 true friends but hundreds of associates. When the going gets tough, non-friends are the first on the life rafts.