True friends have nothing to do with Facebook, Twitter

In this day of social media we have friends all across the country that we can communicate with at the stroke of a key. Whether it is texting or typing, we are connected as never before.

Can I ask you a question? Are you lonely? Sometimes the very technology that connects us can leave us lonely. When you need a girl chat (or a guy chat) do you reach for your iPhone to call — or do you text? Do you meet for coffee or sit at the screen typing?

What is a friend? Merriam-Webster defines a friend as, “one attached to another by affection or esteem, a favored companion.” Companion is defined as “one that accompanies another, one that keeps company with another; one that is closely connected with something similar.”

We need friends. We are created to have that favored companion, to be closely connected, to be affectionately attached to others. And this differs from the “friends” on Facebook and Twitter.

How many people follow you on Twitter? How many friends on Facebook? Of those, how many will be there to clean your house or sit with you when you’ve had a bad day?

Did you know that “friend” or “friendship” is in the top 1 percent of terms looked up on Merriam-Webster’s site? I think maybe many of us are trying to figure out friendship in this new age of technology.

Friendships, to be healthy and fulfilling, need to be “give and take.” To have that companion walk with you, you must be willing to be that companion to walk with another. This is true in marriage, but also in friendship.

I hear from many women expressing the challenge of friendship and loneliness. Relocation can leave us separated from strong, supportive relationships and often when we need them most — during deployment.

I do not have five easy steps to attract friends. What I do have is ideas and tips to become a good friend.

Deb is my persistent friend. Deb decided we were going to be friends — without my knowledge and/or consent. Deb demonstrated characteristics of friendship that drew me into her loving circle of friends.

Patience: Deb was willing to wait for me to respond to her overtures of friendship. She did not expect me to respond in a certain time frame. Good thing too — it took almost a year.

Acceptance: Deb knows we all have “warts.” Deb chooses to overlook warts to see the person behind the warts. I have always felt accepted by Deb. She may not always agree with me, but she always accepts me as a person.

Consistent persistence: This is the attribute that bothered me most about Deb — but that I most love and appreciate now. Deb reached out to me consistently with an e-mail and phone call once a week for nine months before I accepted an invitation to get together. Wow!

Selfless: Deb didn’t want to be my friend to “get” something from me. She befriended me to give, to share. She looked for ways to be companions on the same journey with me.

Forgiveness: Deb was quick to forgive me when I was stupid. She was equally quick to ask forgiveness when she wronged me.

Building deep friendships takes time, but with these characteristics we can build friends that will enhance our lives — and we will add to theirs.

As a military spouse, I have seen the road to friendship accelerated by the very nature of our lifestyle. Don’t be discouraged. Work on becoming that friend and watch what friends bloom in your life.

— Connect with Beth at beth@homefrontinfocus.com.

© 2012 Ventura County Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Commanding Officer

CAPT. LARRY VASQUEZ

Chief Staff Officer

CAPT. SCOTT LOESCHKE

Lighthouse Editor

ANDREA HOWRY, 805-989-5281

Public Affairs Officer

KIMBERLY GEARHART
Ventura County Star - 805-437-0000

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MARGIE COCHRANE, Ventura County Star

Niche Publications

JOHN GARCIA, 805-437-0365

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The Lighthouse publishes every other Thursday. All stories and photos must be submitted no later than the Thursday prior to publication. To submit a story or photo request, call the Lighthouse editor, Andrea Howry, at 989-5281 or send an e-mail to lighthouse@navy.mil.
THE LIGHTHOUSE IS PUBLISHED AT NO COST TO THE GOVERNMENT EVERY FRIDAY BY VENTURA COUNTY STAR, OF CAMARILLO, CA. VENTURA COUNTY STAR IS A PRIVATE FIRM IN NO WAY CONNECTED WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE OR THE UNITED STATES NAVY, UNDER WRITTEN CONTRACT WITH NAVAL BASE VENTURA COUNTY. THE LIGHTHOUSE IS THE ONLY AUTHORIZED CIVILIAN ENTERPRISE NEWSPAPER FOR MEMBERS OF THE U.S. NAVY, CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES, RETIREES AND THEIR FAMILY MEMBERS IN THE VENTURA COUNTY AREA. CONTENTS OF THE PAPER ARE NOT NECESSARILY THE OFFICIAL VIEWS OF, NOR ENDORSED BY, THE U.S. GOVERNMENT, AND THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE, OR THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY AND DO NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT THEREOF. THE APPEARANCE OF ADVERTISING IN THIS PUBLICATION INCLUDING INSERTS AND SUPPLEMENTS, DOES NOT CONSTITUTE ENDORSEMENT OF THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE, THE U.S. NAVY OR VENTURA COUNTY STAR, OF THE PRODUCTS OR SERVICES ADVERTISED. EVERYTHING ADVERTISED IN THIS PUBLICATION SHALL BE MADE AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE, USE OR PATRONAGE WITHOUT REGARD TO RACE, COLOR, RELIGION, SEX, NATIONAL ORIGIN, AGE, MARITAL STATUS, PHYSICAL HANDICAP, POLITICAL AFFILIATION, OR ANY OTHER NON-MERIT FACTOR OF THE PURCHASER, USE, OR PATRON. IF A VIOLATION OR REJECTION OF THIS EQUAL OPPORTUNITY POLICY BY AN ADVERTISER IS CONFIRMED, THE PUBLISHER SHALL REFUSE TO PRINT ADVERTISING FROM THAT SOURCE UNTIL THE VIOLATION IS CORRECTED. EDITORIAL CONTENT IS EDITED, PREPARED AND PROVIDED TO THE PUBLISHER BY THE LOCAL INSTALLATION PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICES UNDER THE AUSPICES OF THE NAVAL BASE VENTURA COUNTY PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE.
An estimated crowd of over 200 private industry professionals gathered at Wednesday’s Industry Forum at the Embassy Suites in Oxnard to hear from high-ranking civilian and military personnel from Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC), Port Hueneme Division about doing business with the Navy.

Thursday, April 24, 2014
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