We, like most in our generation, learned about adult female friendship from Sex and the City. What we saw wasn’t always pretty—remember the FedEx episode?—but much of it was truly lovely, like when Charlotte donated her old engagement ring to fund Carrie’s down payment for her apartment (this moment still makes us cry). The ladies weren’t always perfect in their relationships with one another, but they did a pretty good job overall. Here’s how you can tell if your girlfriends think you’re likewise succeeding at being a good gal pal … or not.
Personally, we don't think you're that great at friendship if your girlfriends are afraid to tell you things they've done that are less than savory. The best friendships are non-judgmental, so if your friends avoid telling you when they text their ex (or sleep with their version of Mr. Big), you might want to check in with yourself on how you react to actions with which you disagree.
The best friends know when you're in need, whether or not you've expressly communicated it. If you often find yourself asking if something is wrong when a bestie seems down or anxious—before they've offered up any information to that end—your friends probably appreciate your ability to sense when they're drowning more than you know.
Good friendships aren't always even—sometimes one person has better finances than the other and can pick up the check more often, for example. In the best friendships, these give-and-take dynamics are a given, and inequities are never thrown back in the face of the "taker." Each person knows that they contribute in their own way—and is happy to do it. If you give without taking inventory of what you take, you're probably a good friend.
As we get older and enter into different stations of life at different times, it can be tough to keep friendships together. Good friends, however, don't guilt their besties for "abandoning" them for a boyfriend, a husband, kids or a new city. Instead, they know that the friendship is strong no matter what and that they can and will always come back to it when the timing is right.
When you're truly a good friend, you feel nothing—we repeat, nothing—but happy when good things happen to those in your inner circle. If your friend can tell you about her success while you're failing, for example, without you feeling the need to subtly take her down a notch, you're good at friendship.
If you stick with any relationship long enough, you are bound to see the other person behave badly. Maybe this is as extreme as drug addiction or as subtle as the trying on of a new, less palatable identity, but whatever the case may be, a good friend doesn't run because real love—platonic or otherwise—doesn't dissolve when times get tough. If you stick by your friends when they seem their least lovable, you are not just a good friend but a great one and will (hopefully!) find your efforts reciprocated by worthy besties.