Best friends forever

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The words "Best Friends Forever" inscribed on the Golden Gate Bridge

Best friends forever or BFF is a phrase that describes a close friendship typical of teenage girls and young women.[1][2] Such friendships are characterized by intimacy, trust and a sense of permanence.[3] The contacts between the close friends tend to be frequent and be based upon shared experiences such as attendance at the same school.[3] Such relationships are common in high school but, rather than lasting forever, tend to deteriorate when the parties go to college.[1]

In elementary and middle school, best friendships often last less than one full academic year.[4] Eileen Kennedy-Moore says that parents can help children cope with a friendship rift through strategies such as empathizing, discouraging retaliation, and encouraging relationship repair. [5]

The term BFF as in Best friends forever has been used at least since 1987.[6] A large survey of friendship in the UK in 2003 found that people had nine close friends on average.[3] In 2009, social networking service Myspace launched "BFF," an online game show series that tested how well best friends knew each other.[7] In 2010, the BFF concept was made part of a BFF contract "to encourage the signatories to work through their differences before splitting up."[8]


  1. ^ a b Debra L. Oswald, Eddie M. Clark (2003), "Best friends forever?: High school best friendships and the transition to college", Personal Relationships 10 (2): 187–196, doi:10.1111/1475-6811.00045 
  2. ^ Susan Ager (January 26, 2007), "Clueless no more about BFFs", Detroit Free Press, retrieved March 25, 2014 
  3. ^ a b c Irene S. Levine (2009), "Ch. 1: Understanding Female Friendships", Best Friends Forever, Penguin, ISBN 9781590203705 
  4. ^ Berndt, T. J., Hawkins, J. A., & Hoyle, S. G., (1986). Changes in friendship during a school year: Effects on children’s and adolescents’ impressions of friendship and sharing with friends. Child Development, 57, 1284-1297.
  5. ^ Kennedy-Moore, E. (2012). Make new friends but keep the old...or not.
  6. ^ Marcia Cummings (June 21, 1987), "Students Say: Goodbye, School; Hello, Summer", Miami Herald: 2, retrieved March 25, 2014 
  7. ^ "MySpace Launches "BFF," Online Game Show Series", Bloomberg, April 2, 2009, retrieved March 25, 2014 
  8. ^ "The BFF Contract makes friendships a lasting proposition", Sarasota Herald Tribune, February 11, 2010: B1, retrieved March 25, 2014