Healthy Friendships: Tips for Cultivating Good Relationships

We are sure you already know that friends are critical to have in your life. They can improve your mental and physical health and they are just so fun to have! But sometimes it’s not as easy to make friends as it was when you were in elementary school when everyone played with everyone else. The goal of this article is to equip you with the tools you need to cultivate long, beneficial, and healthy friendships.

Where To Start?

This is probably the most daunting part. It’s not easy to know how to act or what to talk about when you are with someone new. It’s important to remember to just be yourself! As cliche as that may sound, people like authenticity and are more likely to want to continue a friendship with you if they feel like you are being genuine. 

As far as where to meet new people, be authentic about that too! The best place to make friends is the place you hang out regularly. If you have a church or a school, chances are there are people there that are also looking for friends. Otherwise, going to a community book club, the gym, or even a coffee shop all have the potential for meeting new people. You can also try taking a class at Care Net Pregnancy Center of Milwaukee!  Meeting other like-minded moms is a great place to start.

What Are Signs That a Friendship Is Healthy?

There are a few questions to ask yourself when determining if a friendship you have is healthy: 

  • Do I feel seen and heard when I talk to this person? In a healthy friendship, you should feel safe to share stories and struggles with, and they should listen.
  • Can I ask this person for help when I need it? In a healthy friendship, you should feel like the other person would be happy to help you in a time of need. 
  • Does this person make me a priority in their life? In a healthy friendship, it should feel like both people make an equal effort to see each other, so if it takes days to respond to a text, or if you’re initiating every conversation, it may be best to talk to them. 
  • Do I feel like I can be myself around this person? In a healthy friendship, you should be able to show your goofy and weird side without feeling judged. 
  • Do I feel respected by this person? Are we able to have fun while also having serious conversations? Friends will always disagree sometimes, but a good friend will not make you feel lesser for having a certain idea or opinion. 

What Can I Do To Make My Friendships Healthier?

There are many ways to work on your friendships and make them more healthy. Here are a few examples. 

  • Be a good listener: you want your friend to listen to you, and in the same way, you should listen to your friend. Be intentional about the questions you ask and the ways that you listen to them. 
  • Try not to compare: competition and comparison within friendships can be damaging. Recognize each other’s good qualities without feeling like they are outshining you. 
  • Be nice: this almost goes without saying, but we’ll say it anyway. Someone who treats people with kindness is someone that people want to be around. Positivity leads to more positivity. 
  • Take responsibility for your actions: if you hurt the other person (intentionally or unintentionally) it is still a good idea to say sorry. You would hate to have your friendship ruined over a little argument, so admit when you’re wrong and apologize. 
  • Have hard conversations: if something isn’t working for you, bring it up! Don’t be afraid to talk about what is bothering you and what needs to be improved. 

A good friend is so valuable to have in both good and bad times, but maintaining healthy friendships can sometimes be hard. Try to go out of your comfort zone and meet a new friend, even if you already feel like you have enough friends. You’ll never know who you will meet. 

For more information about classes and groups at Care Net Pregnancy Center of Milwaukee check out our website at!


Care Net has been serving Milwaukee area women since 1985 and through this blog, we hope to continue sharing with the greater community peace, hope, and information related to pregnancy.