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Having online friends - considered sad? watch

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    (Original post by moment of truth)
    Hey,I saw a post on here a couple days ago where someone said they had an online friend when they were at their lowest, I saw this as saying that having an online friend if you are not going through a tough time is seen as somewhat sad or something along those lines? I don't see any problems with having online friends, personally. What do you think?
    depends.
    I have a very large social group in person but I love meeting new people though so that leads to online friends who I usually have the intention of meeting in person.
    Making friends online is a very easy way to meet new people.
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    I don't think it's sad at all! When I was 13 I had a group of online friends I made through twitter (we were all fans of a particular music artist aha) and we used to do group skype chats loads. They were there for me when I went through a bit of a crap patch trying to figure out my sexuality. 5 years later and we've grown up but I've never lost touch with them, we still organise the odd meet up and I still talk to one of the girls pretty much everyday and she's now one of my best friends. I go up to her city regularly for nights out and stay at hers aha.
    I think online friends are great, as long as the person doesn't become so obsessed with the internet that it affects their relationships in real life. Because of the internet I have friends all over the UK I know I can always rely on, so I'll never regret it.
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    It is strange to have online friends... I mean, I do feel embarrassed to say where I met some of my friends! So I guess I do find it weird.

    Having said that, I used to play some online own-a-pet games when I was 12-13 and I made some good friends there who I've kept in touch with over the years and since met up with several times. They're mostly international so I've even got to go on some awesome group holidays. IMO it will become more common and then eventually sound like a less weird explanation of how you met each other

    But for now, even though I've done it, I have to admit it does sound strange to tell people I met certain friends online! It sounds suspicious somehow, even to me, but I think it's probably because we were some of the first young people to start using the internet like that. It's obviously good to have real life friends as well though, I mean, I'd hope people mostly do!

    There's actually a whole community of people who do only have online friends though. People with disabilities, mental health problems and so on who can't go out and are living in isolated ways actually find the internet tremendously helpful so they can connect with people. In that sense I hope it does become more normal because for those people it can be a lifeline. You come across them from time to time in online communities and it's clear how much the friendships they make on there actually mean to them.

    We all need friends.
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    I don't think it's sad. Text is just another means of communication - just because you're not seeing them face to face or speaking verbally doesn't diminish the friendship. There are disabled people who can't leave their homes so online friends are their real friends - it really depends on your definition of what is meaningful communication. So people communicate better in writing and some have no other choice but to communicate in writing.

    Does any one remember pen pals on Ceefax/Teletext? That was basically the same kind of thing before the internet got really big.
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    I have had some very good online friends who have helped me, it's not sad.
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    I have no friends online and no friends in real life. :gasp:
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    (Original post by Keyhofi)
    Haha that was me who said that (unless you happened to come across another member who said something similar ) Let me explain a bit further. There are no problems with online friends. Fullstop.

    But I would argue that a close RL friend is better than a close online friend, but perhaps not by that much. This is simply down to the variety of experiences you can share in the real world compared to online.

    I would also say that having online friends isn't uncommon. Even though my life is back on its feet and has been for a while, I still have many online friends even though I have plenty of real life ones too. I just like having both. The internet allows you to connect to people from a much wider pool and so you can really find people just like you.

    The thread my original statement was posted in was about people who couldn't make friends irl for a variety of reasons. I proposed online friendships as a potential solution to the problem. Never meant for it to be interpreted any other way
    Hey,

    Yeah I am pretty sure it was your post. I forgot to mention in my OP that it wasn't just your post that inspired me to write this thread and so I am sorry if I offended you (wasn't meant to). I often over analyze statements and I don't think I actually thought you were saying it, I was just thinking that there must be some people that do. I agree with you, too.
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    (Original post by TorpidPhil)
    What is sad is being sad. If an online friend does work to alleviate your sadness then having them in your life is anything but sad!
    Yeah, this is true. I have had personal experience of this, too. They have helped me when I was most vulnerable and I don't know what I would have done without them.

    (Original post by Feraligatr)
    Online friends (quite a few from TSR) have helped me when I've felt horrible and felt too embrassed to tell anyone in real life, its definitely not sad.
    Agreed.
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    (Original post by DanB1991)
    Mehhhh I wouldn't say it's sad per say.

    I've been involved in a gaming clan for just over two years now, a few months after this we decided to have a meetup with around 20 odd people coming from various places across the UK, Ireland and Belgium. Since then we increased our membership with roughly 25 people now meeting up once every 6 months in two locations, one oversea's.

    This all means I have originally online friends, who now are "real life" friends, a very close group at that seeing we talk online via teamspeak almost every day. I still have my original set of friends who I see as much as I used to.
    I've done basically the reverse. I used to have a fun group of friends in real life that I played games with a lot, but they turned into online friends when I moved to another country.
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    I think it's sad tbh to have online friendships in lieu of conventional real-life friendships AND I do pity people who don't have anyone to interact with on a friend level IRL.

    I have zero online friends mainly because I don't seek friendship online yet I am a member of several online communities not including TSR. I view online friendships as superficial and decidedly fake and disingenuous because the other person you're confiding in can leave the conversation at any moment and that makes me VERY uncomfortable and anxious.
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    (Original post by Daenerys...)
    I view online friendships as superficial and decidedly fake and disingenuous because the other person you're confiding in can leave the conversation at any moment and that makes me VERY uncomfortable and anxious.
    I don't see any reason to believe that they are superficial and fake by their very nature. I mean, most internet friendships do, frankly, form out of some desperation or to compensate for insecurities but I have had many that are sincere and have lasted many years. Granted, for that to happen in any meaningful way you have to surpass the level of merely texting one another every so often and get on voice chat and play games together or something (I guess you could simultaneously watch movies while chatting if that's your thang).

    Anyway, I don't get why you are so bothered with them being able to leave the conversation at any moment... Can people in real life not do that? I've done that. Well, not left mid-conversation hahahaha, but just left people without warning and never contacted them back, never said a goodbye. Thing is, I had no real emotional commitment to those people which is why I did it but I think it's very possible to have an emotional commitment with an online friend. Given that they are emotionally committed I highly doubt they'de just bail on you... I know I've struggled to do that in the past with online friends despite bailing on my IRL "mates" completely! Because my online friendships were sadly more intimate...
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    Not at all, I've talked to some great people all time, that seem to understand me much more than a lot of people in real life. It's certainly better than no friends & who knows you maybe see each other in person in the future.
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    (Original post by moment of truth)
    Hey,

    Yeah I am pretty sure it was your post. I forgot to mention in my OP that it wasn't just your post that inspired me to write this thread and so I am sorry if I offended you (wasn't meant to). I often over analyze statements and I don't think I actually thought you were saying it, I was just thinking that there must be some people that do. I agree with you, too.
    Don't worry I just wanted to be sure the understanding was clear.
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    You unfollowed me majmuh
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    I find this post very interesting because i'm in the same sort of situation. I don't have any RL friends but i have a few people from instagram that i speak to, who i have never met. I'm not sure if my obsession with the internet is hindering my real life??
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