I used to wander around the jewelry store imagining myself wearing it. Each of the necklaces had a broken half of a heart with the inscription "best friends."

I didn't buy these necklaces out of fear that my best friend wouldn't respond to the label, but because of the thought that they wouldn't.

There are stories of friendship levels and the negative spiral it causes. It is possible that your best friend has implied that you are not theirs. What do you think should be done about this? According to communication and friend experts, labels aren't the most important part of friendship.

What's in a friend?

There isn't a single way to think about friendship. Jeffrey Hall is a professor of communication studies at the University of Kansas. "Other people are more restrictive with who they call a friend"

Differences in people's standards of what qualifies as a friend will lead to disagreements. It's a common occurrence for children and adults to have differing definitions of what constitutes a friend.

Kate Leaver said that people's classification systems are based on how they make you feel, how often you see or contact them, and how much comfort and solace you give each other.

A study shows how persuasion by friends can change behavior. Students were asked to rate each other on a scale from not knowing the person to best friend. In 53 percent of cases, people who were named as a friend expected their friend to do the same.

Leaver said that two friends who think differently about the level of friendship probably do so because they bring the weight of their past experiences to every interaction they have. She said it was almost impossible to expect they would match with someone who came into our lives.

How social media impacts friendship

Older people think that Facebook has changed what they think of as a "friend" due to friending actions on the platform. That isn't the case. People only have the ability to hold 150 relationships at a time if they have a lot of Facebook friends. This number was determined in the 1990s by an anthropologist named Robin Dunbar.

Natalie Pennington, assistant professor of communication at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, said that there are still limitations in how many close relationships we can have.

Consistency of effort is required to maintain relationships. Hall found two factors to friendship in his research.

A lot of our relationships take a long time to build. The idea of easy access to one another is what makes a good friendship.

It's1-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-65561-6556 Pennington said that self-disclosure, intimacy, provision of support, and trust are important when it comes to friends.

People have different standards of who to call friends and what it means to be intimate. You can know someone for a decade and they won't tell you anything about their life, while someone you met five minutes ago is talking about their life. Every person is the same and one isn't more desirable than the other.

When it comes to how close you are with someone, perceived intimacy can be a factor. Hall said that the ability to keep up with people through social media is unparalleled. Like one-sided para social relationships, passive viewing of deep knowledge through a person's social media accounts can leave you with a sense of intimacy that isn't really there.

The process of relationship development is a slow one. The layers reveal who I am. It's reciprocated.

It's not reciprocated by social media. Pennington said you could wedge in to learn something about him that you didn't intend to.

What if I'm not my BFF's BFF?

Leaver said that it would be shocking to find out that someone doesn't consider you the same as you do. It is upsetting to think that we may care more about someone else than we do.

"So many of our problems can be traced back to our mismatched communication styles, our reluctance to really be honest with people."

Leaver blamed the issue onmiscommunication. "The older I get, the more sure I am that many of our problems can be traced back to our incompatible communication styles, our reluctance to be honest with people, and our fundamental unknowability as people," she said.

What should be done in this situation? Leaver said if your friend doesn't feel the same about you, you should ask yourself some questions. Why does it matter if you're a good friend?

Leaver said to remind yourself and your friends that you are safe and loved.

The impact of a friendship is more important than the label. She doesn't believe that everyone has to have a best friend.

She said she didn't know anything about having a best friend that gets you somewhere, but having someone who could support you, and someone you know you can call when you need to complain. The label of "best friend" is meaningless.

Look at the actions instead of the labels. Those are what support our well being.

There is more research to be done on the phenomenon of my-best-friend-but-not- theirs, but for now, take solace in the fact that friendship is more than that. It's about who is there for us and who isn't.