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Single Living

Ever wonder how much love costs? It’s got to be a pretty hefty price tag to start a new relationship — the dates, the new clothes, the cell-phone overage charges. No doubt, the wallets of both men and women (mostly the man if he’s a gentleman) take a hit at the start of a new relationship.

And most have noticed the lack of free time, which can easily eliminate quality time with friends. But did you know that the actual cost of love, as it relates to those bonds, is two friends?

While starting a new romance can be an exciting experience, anthropologists at Oxford University have discovered it can also come at the price of shrinking your social network.

They have found that on average people have two fewer close friends when they are in romantic relationships than when they are single.

A surprise finding to some of the anthropologists who led this, but I would gather not too much of a surprise to readers here. And it probably isn’t a surprise to this Irish columnist, who says “best friendships are a precursor to romance”:

These are the friendships that mark your life and in many ways contribute to who you become, it’s someone with an influence to compete with your family and the oracle “my teacher.” A friendship like this is a place to grow away from your family in safety, a next step. And precisely because of what they give you, independence, they commit a sort of harakiri.

A next step in obsessive best friends is romance, and the best friend left behind often feeling, well, dumped. Along has come someone who offers not only competition, but another level.

A level of intimacy that all individuals long for. This intimacy includes an appreciation for one another’s personalities, gifts, and strengths, while challenging one another to grow in virtue – if and when it reaches a certain level of seriousness, a love that’s unconditional in nature, mirroring the love of God.

So while you may lose a best friend at the start of a new relationship, what you’re hopefully gaining — a best friend like no other — is a priceless gain.

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5 Comments

  1. Jacob-440943 September 30, 2010

    More good news associated with picking up a significant other and loosing that pesky extra money: Research has shown that a paper-thin wallet is much much lighter which may help alleviate some back problems and although being in a relationship may make you spend more on gas, the feather-light wallet load will get you better gas mileage (unless the other half of the relationship is also in the car).
    :-)

  2. Lisa-533093 September 30, 2010

    Seems to me the net loss is only one friend — lose two, but gain “a best friend like no other.” And this is probably more likely to be true of younger people, who tend to be more gregarious and whose friendships may not yet have long roots, rather than older folk who, if they have always been single, will have more settled and well-founded friendships that they will not easily relinquish.

  3. Elaine-607083 October 6, 2010

    hmm?

  4. Robert-3483 October 6, 2010

    I highly suggest comparing this to the advice of the Gentleman Saint and Church Doctor, originally provided for catholic married woman about holy friendship.

    http://www.catholictreasury.info/books/devout_life/index.php
    PART III. Containing counsels concerning the practice of virtue
    17. On Friendship: Evil and Frivolous Friendship
    18. On Frivolous Attachments
    19. Of Real Friendship
    20. Of the Difference between True and False Friendship
    21. Remedies against Evil Friendships
    22. Further Advice concerning Intimacies
    24. Of Society and Solitude

  5. Jacqueline-198 October 7, 2010

    I’m wondering why should one lose a friend anyway? I know while growing up, my friends would ‘dump’ me as they got their boyfriends, they lost their boyfriends but I’d still be around to listen to their moaning and wailing…true friends stick around as long as you don’t neglect your friends, I’ve always made sure to not neglect my friendships while dating and if anything included my best friend in group events where I would be with my boyfriend, that’s the beauty of CM and the local events, friends can gather in a no pressure environment, even dating couples enjoy getting together with CM friends. Also..who says relationships need to be expensive…there are so many forms to communicate, email, text, Skype and of course phone calls, and there are loads of inexpensive activities…especially in this economy. This chica is also a believer of treating her special guy as well (especially when I was working, LOL).

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