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What are the pros and cons of making friends online?

278 Answers
Last Updated: 04/22/2020 at 10:39am
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
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Collin McShirley, LMFT

Marriage & Family Therapist

I love helping people overcome challenges with food, depression, and anxiety. My work with clients is nonjudgement, supportive, and kind.

Top Rated Answers
confidentPeace19
April 15th, 2018 6:30pm
The pros are that they’re friends. They’ll be people you can talk to and have fun with. The cons can be that you can’t always tell that they’re who they told you they are.
endearingLion70
April 21st, 2018 11:38am
For some people it is easier to talk to people online and so it is a way of making friends that is easy and not threatening. Still since it means connecting with strangers the same danger as striking relations with a total strangers are the cons.
SupportivePerspective
May 31st, 2018 7:20pm
A big pro is that they are always there. A friend you can carry along in your pocket, if you will. And the biggest con is that you can't talk to them face to face. You can't hug them or just sit next to each other in peaceful silence.
Anonymous
June 10th, 2018 2:34am
Pros: You can be anonymous and share personal information easily. Distance is not a problem. You can connect with likeminded people and meet new people. You have someone to talk to. You can overcome social anxiety. Cons: It can be dangerous as you do not really know who you are talking to. There is a lack of face to face contact. They can disappear easily without any trace. Predators There are more to each category. Just remember to be safe and be smart!
Anonymous
June 27th, 2018 5:53am
Pros are that you can feel comfortable in sharing your secrets or that you can share and in return get some personal experience. The con however is that in online you're not 100% sure who you're talking to
elishevacares
June 30th, 2018 10:54am
Pros: - you can meet new people from different background and learn new things - if you meet a good person, then you can have a good friend that you probably don’t get in real life Cons: - If you don’t set limit and be online too much, you might neglect your real life - if you meet a bad person and you do something that you are not supposed to do you might get in trouble (e.g you send your ‘private’ pictures or videos to someone and he or she spreads it online)
pretendpoet
July 7th, 2018 4:38pm
Friends online can be wonderful assets to your life; they can offer support, be someone to talk to, and make you happy. However, it may be difficult to see them in person.
SpringWaltz
August 19th, 2018 9:10am
Pros are you can interact with anyone you will have a conversation online its easy to talk and you can share without hesitation any of your stories or situation without judgment unlike on thw one's you know for a long time and you will also have many people to interact with, different personalities and perspective in life. But the cons of making friends online is that most of them are strangers, You dont know them personally so its a bit dangerous somehow since you dont know them personally, some of them are maybe good some may are not so just be careful making friends online :).
PhilosophicalRat
January 9th, 2019 4:33pm
When making friends online, there are many benefits. Online it i easier to meet new people from around the world and gain more insight into the lives of people in different cultures and areas that may be unreachable at the time. The internet makes it easier to talk to different kinds of people and have a better understanding of the diversity of opinions and cultures in the world. Some people in different areas of the world may understand you better than the people where you are do. However, there are a few downsides. It may be hard to meet these people in real life, which may become painful as you get older. It is also hard to maintain your safety and information, as not everyone online is who they say they are.
Anonymous
February 13th, 2019 9:07pm
I'll make a list of each, just because. PROS: • You can be anonynous • They don't expect any personal information • It's helpful for people who suffer from social anxiety • You don't have to worry about embarrassment or humiliation. • They'll (almost) always be on your side • You can vent without any of the repercussions of venting to a friend • You can time conversations to a schedule CONS: • They'll never truly know who you are • Odds are you'll never get to meet them • You can't really tell how their feeling (emotions obscured over the internet) • Most of the time it's hard to trust someone you don't know • They might be lying to you and you would be unaware
wendilin91015
April 27th, 2019 10:27am
I have found that some of my online friends are just as important to me than my face to face friends. Having that connectivity with an online community gives another place to go to for engagement with hobbies, common interests, support groups, school help, and so much more. When you join an online network, you are finding like minded people to share ideas and grow, but that can be a negative. As we have seen in the news, some hate groups and extreme belief organizations can target online groups to grow their base, injecting their extremity in chat rooms and forums. Be careful the type of talk you engage in and keep yourself grounded. If you find yourself spending more and more time online with a group and less time with face to face interaction, it may be wise to set limits on your online time, say one hour a day, or just weekends. Try to find a local group in your town or at school where you can meet people. Online friends are great, but sometimes we need to have a friend to hold our hand and tell us everything is going to be ok!
Anonymous
May 10th, 2019 3:35am
Pros: It may be easier to speak freely, and things like looks and age don't matter so much. It's easier to find people like you with common interests. You can connect with people in other parts of the world. Cons: You might never meet them in real life, and you don't really know how much of what they're saying is true, so it requires a degree of trust. Some people may ask really forward questions online right away that they'd never ask in person such as starting a conversation with questions about your age. Online friendships may be more superficial than those in real life.
BethanyMae
May 26th, 2019 10:51am
There is a lot of stigma surrounding this issue at the moment. For example, there are several horror stories about the bad things that can come from having friends online that we often overlook the good things. I mean, you can have friends from all over the world and you can learn their languages and culture. You can also reach out to people you wouldn't normally meet in day-to-day life. Sadly there is a bad side to making friends online. For example, if the friend lives faraway, you may feel disappointment that you cannot see them often, if at all. Also, with online friends, when you first start talking with them you have to be really careful that you know that the person you talk to is really that person. Remember to check for warning signs, for example, asking for money or pressuring you do certain things. Over all, treat the people you meet online with the same respect and kindness you show people in real life!
Anonymous
June 5th, 2019 1:30pm
Pros: -You have a wider community online, so you can meet more people and not be limited by the people you are surrounded with, who may not be ideal for you. -If you feel lonely they can help you fill the void and feel a bit better by just having someone to chat with whenever and about whatever. -There is often less judgement online, and if you are an introvert it can help. Plus if they are somewhere else in the world, you can open up and talk to them, after all confrontation is not really possible. Cons: - People who resort to going online all the time, usually have psychological issue that they may or may not be in touch with. - They might do anything to get a friend because they are unable to get real life friends, or they are constantly unhappy and running away from something, that isn't good for you to be surrounded by. - They can invade your privacy, by wanting to "meet you" which is usually driven by severe desperation. -They might give you false hope, especially if you are vulnerable. They might say they "really like you" etc. to either deceive you, or because they feel very lonely, so they mistake fulfillment with "love."
Anonymous
June 22nd, 2019 6:06pm
making friends online is easy and you have someone to talk to at the click of a button. However, you never know who is behind the screen. It can be very dangerous if you are not careful. Furthermore, there is always an easy way to lose a friend that is online. However, online friends do provide you immediate support, even if you can’t see them in person. Online friends can be very fun and give you friends you would not normally have, but you have to watch out for the ones that could be dangerous. As seen, having online friends has many pros, but also many cons.
Efini06
July 4th, 2019 8:39pm
The pros: You can be friends with people from all over the world It's easier to strike up a conversation. If you're a shy person, it's probably easier for you to approach people in the online world It's easier to open up. Many people find it easier to share things with their online friends because they feel more comfortable typing the words than saying them. Cons: There is no body language and intonation. Communication without body language and intonation can lead to misunderstandings. Sadly, emoticons don't always help You can lose yourself in the online world. Online friendships can get addicting. You might end up abandoning your real-life friends in favor of your online acquaintances. You can be taken advantage of. Are you really sure that they are who they seem to be? Maybe you've really found yourself a great friend, and maybe you're just being catfished.
Itsokay091
July 13th, 2019 2:28pm
Pros - 1. we get to know the heart first. 2. Confidently share our feelings without the fear of being judged. 3. Get to meet some wonderful souls sitting miles away from us. 4. Get to know about different cultures. Cons -1.if they decide to abandon you someday , you would not get the chance to say a goodbye and unsaid goodbyes are very hard to deal with. Then it feels like virtual world is a mask behind which there is no face. 2. There could be people pretending to be someone they are not. 3. Long distance sucks. Sometimes it's impossible to meet them in person.
FlightlessSongBird
July 19th, 2019 2:25pm
They can get you through some very tough times. I have had some very close online friends for the past 7 years and they’ve been very important to my mental health. Sometimes it’s much easier making friends online as opposed to real life due to geographic location or other restrictions but the online community can exist in your home, accessible by your devices. The online community exists in every time zone and is a very diverse array of individuals that can be exactly what you’re looking for in a friend as opposed to looking for specific characteristics in the limited amount of people near you.
Anonymous
August 8th, 2019 12:06am
Pros are you have new friends to talk about things you like and enjoy. You really don't have to worry about making an effort to get dressed up or spend money going out with them. You get to talk to them when you want to. I guess there is less judgement as you can say things online or be a bit different to your outside persona. Cons. They may live in a different country so different time zones mean chatting would be hard as well as meeting up in the future. You may offend someone and not mean to because of how you've written a message and how it sounds could be misinterpreted.
Anonymous
August 16th, 2019 9:32pm
When it comes to pros, the one I think of first is that generally you won't be afraid to speak openly of your ideals or principles. This leads to a more "genuine" friendship, where you're not fearful of what society in general might think of what you're saying. Another pro that comes to mind is your ability to contact each other quite easily. A con for me would be the inability to create binding experiences out there, such as camping together, going out for a drink, etc. A second con is regarding the anonymity granted with online encounters, sometimes people may exploit us by assuming the role of someone we'll be fond of.
AaronBurnsXXX
August 17th, 2019 5:40am
The pros of making friends online are that you can listen and support each other if you need too. Also you have someone to talk to and not feel alone. You can also learn new methods from them in how to deal with certain situations. The cons are unless you physically me them you do not know who you are really talking to. You could be a child thinking you are talking to a child your own age but really it is an adult and that adult is acting as a child and wants for example explicit photos of that child.
TheHelpfulPillow
September 16th, 2019 10:12pm
Let's start with the pros. Well, they can't stand you up if you meet online, and they can't physically harm you. If they say anything mean, you can remove them from your life immediately with a single "Block button". - You can learn about new cultures, ways of lifes. - You control how much personal information they learn about you. As for cons, well they might not be who they say they are. They might try to scam you, or heck even go as far as hacking your computer. They might try to message other people you know or impersonate you or a friend.
Anonymous
October 26th, 2019 1:33pm
Talking to anonymous friends about your troubles makes it much easier; they can’t judge you, they can only help you through your hard times. You have to take care of yourself though. Internet security is a must. But other than that, your online friends can listen to you, help you, guide you, laugh with you, and many more. Your online friends are her to make sure you have an amazing time and a wonderful life filled with blessings. If there is any way your internet friends can help achieve that, trust me they will. I must repeat this because it is of the utmost importance, you have to secure yourself: don’t share your real name, address, phone number, or meet up with any of your online friends. This is only for your safety and security and nothing else; so make sure you follow the rules and enjoy your time online.
Anonymous
October 31st, 2019 1:52am
Pros: Being able to "hide" behind a screen alleviates some of the anxiety of meeting someone new. If things are awkward, you can always get offline and try again later without the awkward feeling of figuring out how to get out of that situation. On the other hand, if things go well, you have the freedom to chat for longer periods of time than may be possible in person, and it's easier to reach out in times of need. Cons: You don't have that face to face, personal connection. Sometimes it can be difficult to interpret what someone is saying, or the tone of their words when talking to someone online which can add an extra challenge to communicating and making friends online.
BreeBat
February 1st, 2020 7:35pm
Making a friend online gives you the opportunity to meet someone for their personality without knowing what they look like. In a way it's good because if you are usually self conscious with your appearance, you don't need to worry about being judged. It's also good to make a friend not near your hometown and let you explore new people you otherwise would've never met in person. The cons are that the person on the other side of the screen could lie to you really easily, and trust may not be present in the friendship. They could also disappear without a clear reason why, and that can be hurtful if the relationship made is strong. It is also difficult for the most part to meet them at some point. It's always important to be safe with the people you meet online.
Anonymous
February 20th, 2020 10:04am
The Pro's are: Its always good to talk to someone you don't know personally cause by that you feel no judgments cause you don't know them personally. You'd be more open and more honest. And its always good connecting with people around the world, you could learn their culture as well. And then, there's the bad side. The internet is a dangerous place in which if you don't come across good people, they would make you uncomfortable and probably leave an emotional damage.
Anonymous
March 20th, 2020 8:24am
Some cons about making friends online is that you don’t actually know their personality. You need to actually meet that person to decide whether or not to be friends with them. From experience, I met a really nice person and they ended up sending me very unwanted pictures. Another con is that if you meet this person in real life, it may be someone completely different. This is known as catfishing. A pro is that you may meet some really nice people. Just be careful because there are lots of bad people out there so make sure you are being safe.
ListenerToHelp
August 13th, 2016 6:50pm
You wouldn't know if they're dangerous in real life. But it's fun making friends that are miles away or days away.
Anonymous
August 21st, 2016 3:54pm
Pros: You gain new friends. Cons: You are not sure if it is safe to talk to strangers. Your safety should be your priority.
Anonymous
August 27th, 2016 9:24pm
Online friends give you a new perspective on your life because they usually have a different culture. But it can be hard if you get too attached because they're so far.