FeatureFor StudentsOpinionPsychology

What type of friend are you? Friend groups and the science behind them

You’ve heard “we’ve all got that friend.” Throughout a group of friends, there are different roles that are filled. Whether it be the one who’s a planner or the more easy-going type, we all know these kinds of people. When different personalities meet, it can create a group of friends that can last forever. But did you know there might be some science in why you all get along?

Graphic by Haley Jordan/Connect.

Graphic by Haley Jordan/Connect.

While people are drawn to others who come from a similar background, have the same level of education, or are of a similar height and weight, it can be more beneficial to hang with a diverse group.

According to a study by Scientific American Journal, simply interacting with individuals who are different forces group members to prepare better and to anticipate alternative viewpoints.

What type of friend are you? And why do you get along so well with a group of people that can’t even decide on a restaurant? Don’t fret. We’ve got some friend archetypes to help you figure out what type of friend you are and some interesting science to help you understand your (shameless Tom Hanks plugging) “like a box of chocolates” friend group.


  1. The Mom Friend

No group of friends is complete without the mom friend. Do you plan out the group activities and always come prepared with a backup plan? On a night out, are you the one that makes sure everyone gets home safe and doesn’t get too crazy. You may be the Mom Friend. Your friends probably count on you to provide support and comfort and to help them make decisions.

What’s more, your “always available if you need to talk” personality is probably helping you make friends. According to a 1994 study, people who engage in intimate disclosures tend to be liked more than people who disclose at lower levels. Keep up the good Moming.

Graphic by Haley Jordan/Connect.

Graphic by Haley Jordan/Connect.


  1. The Wild Child

On the opposite hand, the friend who is more adventurous is also a staple role. Are you the friend who may disappear for a period of time and then comes back with an incredible story to tell? Is making spontaneous decisions normal for you? You may be the Wild Child, and you probably have no regrets about it. Your friends call you for a good time because everyday is a new adventure with you.

On a side note, is your Wild Child friend the youngest in their family? According to Parent.com, last-born children are usually fun-loving, uncomplicated, manipulative, outgoing, attention-seeking and self-centered.


  1. The Wise One

Whenever you have an important decision to make, there’s always one friend in mind to reach out to. Are you the friend people call when they have an issue that’s serious? Do people tell you that you always give great advice? Have you had a conversation with someone about the meaning of life while in an elevator? You may be the Wise One. But, then again, you probably already knew that.

Fun fact: You might always go to the Wise One for advice because this friend has a high level of emotional intelligence, which, according to Psychology Today, gives a person a heightened ability to identify and manage others’ emotions. They always know what to say in every single situation and will always be honest with you.

Graphic by Haley Jordan/Connect.

Graphic by Haley Jordan/Connect.


  1.  The Oblivious One

This friend has their head in the clouds a majority of the time. Are you usually the most gullible one of the group? Do you feel like you often make comments that leave the rest of the group confused? Always the last to know about something? You may be the Oblivious one.

Although oblivious, you’re probably also great at spreading love and it’s hard for people stay mad at you. When moments get too tense, you provided comic relief. And you probably help the group stay together as shared laughter within a group helps communicate to the world that they share a similar worldview. In turn, this helps strengthen relationships.


  1.     The Trend Setter

No, not fashion. Were talking leadership potential. In most groups of friends, some are more outspoken than others. If you’re the friend that people look to for group decisions, you may be the Trend Setter. However, be careful with your ability to lead. Although it used to be thought that as we age we are less susceptible to peer pressure, this may not be the case. Use your powers for good!

Regardless of what type of friend you are, having a group of friends helps make life a little easier. As human beings, we have an inherent need to be social and friendships help us socialize on a regular basis. It’s even been found that good social relationships decrease the risk of mental illness and even death.

So keep your friends close… and your Mom Friend closer. They might have a snack with them.


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