I want to know a good word for a buddy who only helps, but never takes any help, and he is with you only to help you.

  • 1
    selfless is a good term.
    – mkennedy
    Aug 25, 2011 at 5:38
  • Selfless may or may not be appropriate. Cynically, it may be that they like to meddle in others' affairs but have no one know about their own. Perhaps even "standoffish" or "aloof" would be apt; though clearly "sympathetic" is too.
    – Noldorin
    Aug 25, 2011 at 5:45
  • I'd call such person an ideal friend but it's certainly not commonly accepted word for such a person.
    – Philoto
    Aug 25, 2011 at 7:04
  • Useful idiot perhaps
    – Kris
    Aug 23, 2016 at 0:10

5 Answers 5


You may use altruist.

unselfish regard for or devotion to the welfare of others.

Cambridge Online Dictionary defines altruism as follows:

willingness to do things which bring advantages to other people, even if it results in disadvantage for yourself.

Wikipedia has a page for altruism as well.


Perhaps you could call that person a "guardian angel", meaning:

a person who looks after or is concerned with the welfare of another.


It's probably a cultural or personal choice of words, but the difference between "friend" and "buddy" or "acquaintance" is the lack of selfishness or the amount of good motive when dealing with each other.

So how about just "friend"?

  • 1
    I thought the difference was that an acquaintance will bail you out of jail, while a friend is in the cell with you. :-)
    – T.E.D.
    Aug 25, 2011 at 17:52
  • Hehe, good idea. But would an acquaintance really bail you out, except for his own interest maybe?
    – Raku
    Aug 26, 2011 at 8:30

I don't know how you missed this. That person is a "Blessed Buddy".

In days of yore, they were known as "Guardian Angels".

  • 1
    That is definitely not what ‘blessed buddy’ means in my world. Do you have any sources to back up that the term is used in this sense? I have only ever heard it used to refer to someone who participates in a ‘buddy programme’ for children with various developmental disabilities. Nov 23, 2014 at 21:03


I think Ally would fit better because He/she is An associate who provides cooperation or assistance.

and synonyms for Ally is Friend.

Thank you :)

  • Why it got negaive vote ? Aug 25, 2011 at 6:01
  • I don't know why. According to me i am making perfect sense here. isn't it Rahul?
    – Abid
    Aug 25, 2011 at 6:05
  • 1
    I didnt downvote, but the US and UK are allies. That doesn't necessarily mean the help is only in one direction.
    – JoseK
    Aug 25, 2011 at 6:41
  • 1
    When you are allies, you are expected (though not necessarily obligated) to give help to the other side of alliance too i.e. it is two-sided. The question is about someone involved one-sided assistance relationship.
    – syockit
    Aug 25, 2011 at 6:54
  • 1
    Probably (since it wasn't me who downvoted you answer) because ally is not what OP is looking for. Ally does not imply, that this person wouldn't require help in exchange, more, alliances are usually based on mutual help, which means your allies will require something of you in exchange for their help. Friend here would be more appropriate, but still not exactly what the OP wanted.
    – Philoto
    Aug 25, 2011 at 7:00

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