Amanda. Age 12. Atwater, California
Originally published in March 2004.

Have you ever wondered what made you pick the friends you have? Did you ever rate yourself on what kind of friend you are? What do you value in your friends? These are all good questions to ask yourself. Let me tell you what I would rate myself as a friend and what I value in my friends.

I think friends should be honest. Without honesty friends can get hurt and sometimes lies can tear friends apart. Another thing is caring. I want friends that care about each otherís feelings and care about other people. Also, friends need to be responsible and respectful. Fortunately, most of my friends have these qualities.

Most of the time my friends are all honest with me. Once I was going to do something and my friends stopped me and told me that it wasnít a good idea. They are also caring, responsible and respectful. Sometimes though, as friends we make mistakes. One of my friends was going through a very hard time and the rest of my friends and I stayed with her through it all and make her feel important to us all the time. We know we are friends because, even though we make some really stupid mistakes, we forgive each other and move on.

I would rate myself as a pretty good friend. I try to treat my friends as I want to be treated. Sometimes though, I might do or say something wrong. But thatís how I learn to be a better friend. I really value my friends so Iím usually a good friend. Luckily, I have good friends that will always forgive me if I do mess up.

As Iíve already said, friends are extremely important to me. I know I always have my friends there when I need them. Without friends, life would be so boring and so sad. Each day I try to be a better friend. Even though friends might be spread apart for a while, it doesnít mean they forgot about each other; they might just be taking a break. I will always value my friends, no matter what. We will be friends forever.

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