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This quote from Una McCormack suggests that genuine, caring friendships are not transactional relationships based on keeping track of favors given and received. Some key points in interpreting the perspective:
- McCormack implies that true friendship is characterized by freely giving of oneself to help others without expectation of something in return or tallying benefits provided versus received.
- She portrays friendship as involving compassion and goodwill extended freely rather than a system of credits, debts or obligations between friends.
- McCormack’s perspective conveys the viewpoint that the deepest bonds are built on unconditional support rather than contingent support dependent on balanced ledgers of who owes what to whom.
However, a balanced interpretation acknowledges that while reflecting McCormack’s stance, reasonable people can disagree on how to define friendship, as relationships require ongoing care, empathy, consent and understanding between all people at a pace respecting each person’s autonomy and capacity for growth.
Multiple perspectives have value in ongoing discussions around identity and social harmony. Overall, the quote conveys McCormack’s belief that true friendship is defined by graciousness and care for others’ well-being rather than scorekeeping or transactions between friends.