Papers from the International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology Conferences

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Friendship development refers to the course that people follow since they know each other until they may stop being close friends any more. In this process, the actions making the progress of the relationship possible should be considered, as well as what attracts one person to another and the actions that maintain and deepen the relationship. Blieszner & Adams (1992) agree that friendship develops from knowing each other to obtaining emotional closeness; they define phases that describe changes in friendship. They also agree that those phases do not follow a predetermined sequence, for some friendships become quite close and some others remain in an occasional level; so the stages of friendship are not static events. Maintenance stage involves both dynamic behaviors and activities influenced by culture (Dainton, 2003). The purpose of this chapter is to explore how Mexicans from 19 to 40 years old maintain their friendships. An inventory was developed to assess such strategies. The outcomes revealed that among the several ways of keeping a best friend is the fulfillment of behaviors in order to avoid discussions, surpassing the setbacks, giving support, listening, showing affection and having many things in common as well.

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