You have probably heard people say to their friends “I am behind you” (meaning they want to show their support)???
If I happen to be the friend in question don’t be surprised if I start acting a little cooler towards you after you have uttered that (potentially) fatal to our friendship line.
This is because if people are behind you they can do all kinds of things – stab you in the back, or disappear, etc, without you noticing before it is too late.
I will never tell my friends I am behind them supporting them in whatever situation they are in – they are told I am next to them. I may not be physically next to them but at least that way they (hopefully) realise I am prepared to help them – as well as seeing our friendship as an equal partnership.
When you look at friendship in the same way as someone physically walking with you you will notice that the best place for a guide or a helper is either next to you (so you can hold onto their arm if you need to) or slightly in front of you (so they can point out obstacles and other dangers before you get too close to them).
Call me crazy if you want to but I like to know where people are in a crowd and – seeing as I am not an owl and I cannot see behind me very easily – the people behind me are the ones I trust the least.
Friendship should be about equal measures of give and take.