The people you surround yourself with are your support system. Although it’s never the wrong time to tell someone you appreciate him or her, during this time of year, we often reflect on why we love and value the people in our lives.

Having true friendship in your life is a remarkable gift. When times are toughest, your girls will be there. Good girlfriends always have your back, and that’s truly a blessing.

Have you considered the many reasons you should be thankful for the true friends in your life? Here are five to get you started — we could, of course, go on and on.

She’ll be there when he isn’t.
“Boyfriends will come and go, but girlfriends are here forever.” It was the girl power childhood friendship chant you doodled in each other’s notebooks when a crush never called. It is and will always be, 100 percent truth. A real friend will still be on the other line long after he’s forgotten your number. Be thankful for having someone to stand by you when the chips are down.

She’ll keep it real, always.
If the dress is just a tad bit too tight, she won’t let you leave the store with it. If he stands you up for the third time, she’ll tell you she thinks he’s a total jerk. There really isn’t anything like the life-changing honesty that comes out of a true friend’s mouth. Be thankful you have someone in your life that loves you too much to lie to you.

Nobody knows you better.
Even if you swore you’d never tell a soul about it, you’ve probably already told her.  (Best friends don’t count, of course.) A great girlfriend knows all your stories — your secrets, your successes, and even the times you failed. She’s your walking diary and you are hers. She handles all your business with care and never disappoints. Be thankful for having someone you can truly trust.

No one listens like she does.
Seriously, no one will. If you were asked to list the people who’d still love you after you ranted for hours about the same 10-second encounter between you and that gorgeous guy you met in line at the bank, it’d probably be a very short one.  True friends take “good listening” to a whole new level. Be thankful for having that chance to release in your life.

She will always understand.
You know that thing you said you wouldn’t do, but you did anyway? (You know the one!) Or that time you said you’d call right back, but couldn’t because work took hold of the day? A good friend will forgive and forget all of it before you’ve even finished explaining. When they know your heart, it’s impossible to judge or ever sweat the small stuff. Be thankful for having someone in your life who loves you for you.