Do you have a BFF?

Picture: yvis, user of Momio

Picture: yvis, user of Momio

“Could we please get a BFF button on Momio? Or a boyfriend/girlfriend button? Please please please?”

The users sometimes ask for a BFF button on Momio. Sometimes it is hard to explain why we let our users down over and over again and say no. Let us explain.

Being a part of something and belonging are essential parts of childhood. Finding your way through the crowd and hanging out with your people is something we all desire. We keep telling our kids that they should be with people who like them for who they are and not care about what other people think. But finding that person, that special friend, can be very difficult for some kids. What if no one commits to the role of the best friend?

BFF’s – do they exist?

Let’s have a look at the term BFF – Best friends forever. Do they even exist? Best friends, sure, but forever? Changing friends is like changing hairstyles for some kids, and it is a part of becoming who you want to be at that specific part of your life. Maybe it is better to focus on opening up the possibilities of becoming friends, getting new ones, meeting people who like what you like, instead of tying the friendship knot with only one person? Not expecting the world to be a place where people walk in pairs of two can also be a way of seeing new opportunities. And getting new friends.

“Position as BFF is open – apply today”

“The industry” of BFFs is something we see from time to time on Momio. The same goes for boyfriend/girlfriend hunts. Having a special someone is clearly a status symbol – it’s more about showing off than it is about actual commitment or mutual support. We have to remember that the concept of BFFs, or monogamous relationships for that matter, is human-made and it is a way of normalizing a certain way of living. This will of course feel very satisfying for the people who actually have someone special, “the normal ones”, and make the ones without feel alienated.

We believe that introducing a BFF button on Momio will only make the people not able to push the button (or get rejected when trying to push it) miserable, more than it will help people show their infinite love for one another. A relationship between two people is not something that necessarily needs to be defined or be forever. It’s fine if they want to define themselves (and they can do it in their posts), but making it official on social media is so complicated that they can spend the rest of their lives figuring out how to deal with it.

So the next time you ask your child who their best friend is, keep in mind that the answer can change from day to day, it can be blurry or it simply can be: no one.  And if the answer is in fact no one, try not to panic, maybe a group of people – a (online) community or a subculture is what your kid prefers and needs. That is also fine!

So no, sorry to disappoint everyone asking for it, but we will not get a BFF button on Momio. You are free to love and play with whomever you want on Momio, and of course also forever if that works for you. But the world is a tough place to be defined as friendless or lonely, and we at watAgame will not be a part of making people feel alone or “not normal”. Not having a best friend now does not mean that you will never get one – and who knows, maybe you do not need a best friend or a boyfriend/girlfriend for that matter. Maybe you can be just as happy without them.

Momio – Always among friends. Not just BFFs.

About the author:

Martine Østrem, Momio

Martine Østrem worked as a Norwegian Community Manager at Momio from 2013 to 2016. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Studies and a Master’s Degree in Educational Anthropology. Martine is interested in online communities, minority studies and safety.

  • Emogirly

    November 28, 2015 at 17:08