Friendship is a relationship of mutual affection between people. It is a stronger form of interpersonal bond than an association, and has been studied in academic fields such as communication, sociology, social psychology, anthropology, and philosophy.
Although there are many forms of friendship, some of which may vary from place to place, certain characteristics are present in many types of such bonds. Such characteristics include : affection, kindness, sympathy, empathy, honesty, loyalty, understanding, forgiveness and compassion. Friendship is an essential aspect of relationship building skills.