4 reasons Internet besties are the bomb.com

If anyone wants to accuse me of having a plethora of Internet-only friendships, then I have to plead guilty as charged. The number of Internet friends I have is shockingly close to my number of real-life friends, but if I’m being honest, I don’t regret a thing. Of course, you have to be safe about online friendships. You don’t give out too much personal information and you don’t agree to meet up with strangers from the Internet. But, at the same time, there’s something wonderful about being able to connect, even quasi- or totally anonymously, with other humans from around the world who share your interests, passions and loves.

The people I’ve met on social media platforms like Tumblr and Facebook mean just as much to me as the ones I see everyday. In fact, my Internet friends are often the ones who help me get through the most complicated life issues and offer the best advice, so I’m writing in defense of Internet besties (because really, the people we meet in the online world can be just as great at the ones we meet face-to-face).

They can provide a logical third opinion.

This one is probably one of the biggest advantages of having Internet friends considering they can offer opinions based off of their own experiences, while still being relatively unbiased. Got a problem with some IRL friends? You can count on your Internet ones to offer you refreshing advice. Internet besties can be great support since they normally write their opinions to you and that takes a little more consideration then just saying the first thing that comes to mind.

You’ll have a friend in the most unlikely cities.

One of my favorite things about having Internet friends is knowing people from around the world and learning about their lives, cultures and hometowns. Perth, São Paulo, London — wherever and whenever I’m traveling, I know won’t be bored because besides holiday fun, I also have friends to visit. Internet besties can give you an inside tour of their city plus meeting them in person after years of chatting online is probably one of the most amazing feelings in the world. Also, how cool is it to say, “Yeah, I know a girl in Thailand” to your real-life friends?

You become more cultured.

Besides offering you advice on your personal life, Internet friends are great for teaching you about their own cultures too. It’s always fun to realie how unique different countries’ cultures can be and the number of times I’ve laughed with my online friends in absolute culture shock is almost too high to count. Whether it’s just learning to appreciate different holidays or realizing that that one foreign expression you always say is way off, Internet besties are great for learning, too.

A friend is a friend.

In the end, IRL or online, a friend is a friend and the more, the merrier. Internet friends can be just as sympathetic as real-life ones and personally, I’ve talked about some pretty serious stuff with my Tumblr buddies and gotten the same quality support and sympathy as when I confide in my in-person friends. Plus, with all the different time zones, I know I’ll always have someone to chat with when I need to talk, whether its 1 p.m. or 3 a.m.

Overall, Internet friends are definitely under-appreciated and deserve to be loved just like real-life friends. I never thought that I’d be friends with an Australian surfer girl or English junior, but here I am and I don’t regret a thing. The friends I’ve made online are as cool as it gets and I love them all dearly (especially my Internet bestie, Lila, who is actually the best). So here’s to all the Internet besties of the world, you guys are the bomb.com.

(Image via iStockPhoto.)

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