Tag Archive: Friendships

If you need someone to hang out with for a beer or come with you to a wedding, there is a Web site that allows you to rent that person’s friendly services for an hourly fee.  Yes, it sounds ridiculous to me and no matter how anti-social or lonely I might get, I don’t think I will rent a friend. The thought of it is just sad. It’s sad because every aspect of real life from socializing to dating can now gratified quickly through some online service or Web site. You don’t ever need to get out of the house and do something to meet people. Because a friend is only a click away. That’s just my opinion though, Here’s the full article from AOL.com:

Scott Rosenbaum has thousands of people available to keep you company — for a price. But he’s no pimp, and his website,

RentAFriend.com, is no escort service. Pay $24.95 a month (or $69.95 a year) to become a member, and you get to choose from a vast menu of “friends” with whom you can play Parcheesi, go to the movies, or perhaps use as a fake relative. Almost anything, as long as it doesn’t involve sex.

While some may think it sad that people are willing to pay for the most basic human companionship, Rosenbaum (pictured) views it as an underserved niche and a promising business opportunity. He thinks of his venture as the antidote to dating and sex sites like AshleyMadison.com, which facilitates extramarital hookups. “I want to take it a step backward,” he told WalletPop. “It’s about platonic friendship. There’s a complete void in that market.”

Granted, most of his customers who claim to be merely looking for a pal tend to choose a member of the opposite sex. But Rosenbaum writes that off as human nature. The intent just better not be nooky. While some of his RentAFriends dress provocatively in their profile photo, it’s all about context. Someone wearing a cleavage-baring cocktail number at a party is one thing; flaunting that same dress in a come-hither pose on the bed is another. And Rosenbaum has made it a mission to view and approve every profile.

Rosenbaum launched RentAFriend.com in 2009. He was inspired by a Japanese service that employed the same concept, but that site was aimed more at avoiding social embarrassment. For instance, someone without a father might hire a friend to fill the role at an important function. Requests in the U.S. seem to lean toward less-complicated circumstances. Jennifer Morrison,a married 31-year-old RentAFriend from Las Vegas, accompanied a shy computer programmer to the Pinball Hall of Fame and helped a stay-at-home mom fill her scrapbook, an Associated Press story reported. She charges $20 to $30 an hour.

Lori Thomas, who is in her early 40s and is from Southern California, recently signed up as a friend for hire. She charges $40 an hour. “I did already have one request to go walking on the beach, but the person had to reschedule for next week since he had to go out of town,” she wrote in an e-mail to WalletPop.

RentAFriend.com now boasts more than 209,000 “friends” available for the site’s 2,100 paid clients to choose from. These clients just need to type in their zip code to find out which RentAFriends are located nearby, and to view their profiles. Registrants post at least one picture accompanied by descriptions including “ethnicity” and “body type.” To make contact, visitors must then fork over the dues, which Rosenbaum pockets.

As for the hourly rates, the RentAFriends settle the terms on their own with paid members — fees generally range from $10 to $150 an hour — and they keep the cash for services rendered. It’s an odd way to make money, but for some RentAFriends it’s enjoyable work.

“I don’t care if I get paid,” Doug Hardy, a 25-year-old RentAFriend from Encinitas, Calif., wrote in an email. “I just enjoy hanging out with people.” Hardy liked the concept of being borrowed as a buddy. “It gives people an opportunity to jump into any type of social niche without having to wait several years to gather friends,” he said

Rosenbaum, a married father of two who lives in New Jersey, rises at 2 p.m. and works until 5 a.m. in order to keep RentAFriends.com running smoothly.

“I want to grow it to where someone comes along and wants to buy it for a lot of money,” he said. Yet, Rosenbaum says he sees the site as more than just a way to make cash. While he says many of his members are frequent travelers who don’t want to eat alone while on the road. There is the other half, too.”There are lonely people who don’t have a lot of friends, who want to be social,” he said.

Have you ever felt like there were some people you just can not get along with? That you just couldn’t connect with someone because you felt awkward around him or her? Like there was something holding you back from achieving a normal and comfortable friendship with that person? Well, it just came to me that I experience that all of the time. I just figured out that this is the rootal cause of phases of depression that I go through occasionally. So I’m trying to figure out what the problem is- Trust.

I was just reflecting on all the relationships I’ve had with people especially after my graduation from high school to my two years in college now. I never really had trouble making friends. I actually enjoyed meeting new people and getting to know them. I’m also thankful for some of the friends I have because they are good people and the fact they are able to see the good in me is a reassuring feeling.

But I always predetermined if I would be friends with anyone or not based on the impression I gave them, whether they had a positive vibe about them, if they made me feel good about myself and if I could really trust them. But I would also prepare myself for the day that person would disappoint, ignore and betray me. The day that person gives me any other reason to end that friendship with him or her.

I am also aware that  I can also offend, isolate or betray a friend’s trust (which I have done before). If they are willing to resolve things or cut me out of their lives is completely up to them. I could care less and just move on.

I think this sort of mentality came from the time I became friends with this girl.  Her friends introduced us to each other because we were both in need of dates for prom. Her name was Theresa Perkins. I think I naively fell for her that instant. I planned to tell her how I felt about her during prom and I had only known her for two weeks. But from those two weeks I liked her gentleness, her ambitions, her sense of humor and her whole appearance and visage was just heart-warming and sweet. After I told her I was into her, she let me down easy and told me it was best we stay friends. I was terribly crushed but I got over it. The next couple of days we were online IMing each other on AIM. I remember her telling me how sad it was we were graduating from high school and that nobody would keep in touch with each other. Then she made me promise her that I still keep in touch with her and talk to her. I remember she wrote me in my year book saying that I could call her whenever I wanted to talk because she thought of me as a good friend. I thought she was a great friend too because I felt like I was becoming a better person because of her

So every now and then I called Theresa; just to say hi ask her how her day went. We texted each other. We even bumped into each other at a recreational park and had a short but nice conversation. It was so good to  talk to her. I lit up everytime I saw her.  We were keeping in touch after high school and when we went to our respective colleges freshman year

But all of a sudden I could feel Theresa changing. She wouldn’t want to talk as much or reciprocate conversation and the friendly tone in her text messages were just cut down to cold and uninviting one-letter words like “oh,” “nothing,” “iono,”  and “nm.” There were times she didn’t even respond to my wall posts on Facebook. Never returned my calls. Maybe she was mad at me I thought but what did I do wrong? So I gave her space and waited two weeks before I asked her what was going on with our friendship and she nonchanlantly told me, “I’ve just been busy.”

Since then I’ve never felt more betrayed and let down by anyone. Especially when I invested a lot of time to make a friendship this important to me  to work. I never called Theresa Perkins again, I deleted her number permanently from my phone. Removed her from Facebook so it’d be easier to forget about her. It seemed like the most logical thing to do. It was obvious she did not want me as a friend anymore. I just never really knew why.   

Since then, I always believed the key to making friends was to just being yourself, never forcing anything but to just let things go with the flow. I would never approach anyone and just introduce myself. Things had to happen by chance in order to create the opportunity to be friends with someone. I had a social force-field that was to establish my independence from others. It was very important that I did not get too attached to anybody or let anyone  get too close to me even if I established a close relationship with them. You might call it pride. If anything, pride was the best friend I ever had because pride hardened me and enlightened me since my falling out with Theresa Perkins. Pride told me, friends come and go all that time. Pride told me there were no such things as best friends; that it was just another thing society puts in your head. Pride shielded me from the potential disappointment that can arise from any friendship- good or bad. 

I also feel bad about all the friends andclassmates I lost or forgot about in elementary school. Friends I had  known for more than ten years; from kindergarten to ninth grade. There was this melanchonic pain and longing  I got from not seeing any of them for the longest time after graduation until we were “reunited” through Facebook. By then, I realized it was not the same and I couldn’t connect with them the way I did in the good old days of elementary school. We were just casual acquaintances.

But it doesn’t matter now because I have met new people and have become friends with them in college. but I’m not expecting some life-changing experience from any of these new-found relationships because they will all end up like my previous relationships. I’m not going to rely too heavily on it or put too much of myself into these relationships. Friendships are all part of the good things in this world that come to and end. It is something that I will always emotionally prepare my mind for.