What is the ‘7 Friends’ theory and is it based on anything scientific?
Another interesting new “theory” has been floating around TikTok lately, but this time it isn’t about Miley’s alleged alter ego or the notion that April makes people subconsciously happier.
This one is called the “7 Friends” theory, which outlines the seven types of friendships we should all ideally have as we get older — and it seems to be catching on like wildfire.
The viral theory centers on the belief that keeping quality social circles has a more positive impact on us as individuals. But more specifically, the theory states that the magic number of close friends to have is seven and that all of them should occupy different roles within our lives.
According to the theory, everyone should have the following:
1. A friend they’ve known since childhood and have been through it all with.
2. A friend that makes them laugh, even when times get tough.
3. A friend they may not talk to for a while but can pick right back up with as if no time has passed.
4. A friend they can say absolutely anything to without judgment.
5. A friend who feels like a brother or sister.
6. A friend they can’t imagine not being in their lives.
7. A friend that listens to their relationship problems, even if they’re sick of hearing about it.
The new theory has led countless TikTokers to create videos featuring the many friends in their lives who fulfill all seven roles. In fact, the video trend has become so popular that a search for #7FriendsTheory yields a flurry of videos with more than 10.9 million views between them.
The heartwarming clips are all set to a slowed-down excerpt of “Scott Street” by Phoebe Bridgers and edited together using a template from CapCut.
Many have also elicited emotional responses from commenters who’ve found the videos to be deeply moving and even a bit nostalgic. They’re usually flooded with heart emojis, messages from friends featured in the clips that say, “I love you,” and other comments calling the trend things like “adorable” and “wholesome.”
At the same time, many people have expressed sadness after watching the videos.
“I don’t even have one friend,” one TikTok user admitted.
“can we talk about the 0 friend theory next?” asked another.
“Ur’e so lucky to have them,” wrote someone else.
Others pointed out that one of their friends actually fits all seven types.
This definitely isn’t the first friendship-related theory to make its way across TikTok.
Not too long ago, people couldn’t stop talking about the Shine theory, which claims that women, in particular, need to surround themselves with positive people who let them “shine” instead of tearing them down.
Needless to say, the 7 Friends theory is just that — a theory. And while it’s unclear where or how it started, there’s no scientific evidence to back it up. For some, one person might embody multiple “types” of friends. For others, two or three friends are enough to make their inner circle feel full.
The real key here, it seems, is to pay attention to the types of people you keep close as the years go by and to let your gut guide you on whether or not they’re worthy of your love, time and support.
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