Sunday, February 26, 2006
Just friends?
Last night we went out dancing with some friends at the Ringlockshuppen.

with 3 dance rooms (a room for current hits, for 80's and a 60's british pop room) and 2 levels. It's the biggest night club in town. It was created out of an abandoned train factory

We weren't planning on drinking, but our friends bought us drinks and insisted we kick back. It's our first time really partying again since I returned to Germany a few weeks ago. It was a fun night.

But something happened that made me wonder....

Can men and women ever be "just friends"?

Can a single man have a close friendship with a married woman? Can two single people be simply friends without it leading to a relationship? Without it leading to sexual tension or potential heartbreak?

It seems like every relationship I've had with a member of the opposite sex eventually reached a crossroads. What started as friendship and an understanding all of a sudden leaded to "The talk". Suddenly someone is getting hurt and the friendship is falling apart.

Eric is my bestfriend (for 9 years now) and now also my husband. Every other close friendship I had with any other guy has fallen away.

Is this inevitable? Is it impossible for members of the opposite sex to be just friends? I don't mean aquaintances, I mean real friends.

Then there is the aspect of jealousy, Would you get jealous if your significant other formed a close friendship with a member of the opposite sex?

Sometimes I think it's better to just avoid potential problems by removing yourself from any situations that can lead to this. I find myself questioning people's motives lately.

I don't think men and woman CAN be just friends. Someone is always going to want more. I could be wrong, but from experience...that seems to be the case. It's disheartening.

Can the biological urge for male and female to do what's necessary to procreate be overcome by reaching higher ground?
posted by Clarity25 at 2:22 PM |


At February 26, 2006, Blogger Depressed Married Guy 

"Can the biological urge for male and female to do what's necessary to procreate be overcome by reaching higher ground?"

No...there is no higher order to sustain life on this planet the procreation urge must always rule...

At February 26, 2006, Anonymous yelayna 

It's funny. I asked my mum the same question this morning. I've always had lots of male friends and my dad has always quoted hotel California at me - "she's got a lot of pretty, pretty boys, she calls friends..." and laughed.

I never got it till last night. I suddenly realised that all those men who are my friends would get in my pants if they could. And it freaked me out. Totally caught me off guard... so though I have always defended they "yes they can" argument, I’m starting to come round to no. Which is frightening, because all my friends are men, bar maybe one good mate and some peripheral ones...

At February 26, 2006, Blogger Rosie 

I think it is rare, but it can happen. I have 2 male friends that I would consider to be far beyond the closeness of just an aquaintance. I consider myself to be very lucky.

In one case, I was very close with my guy-friend and had a huge crush on him for quite a long time but things never turned into anything other than just being friends. The crush-like feelings would come and go and eventually they just stopped altogether. Now we are both in long term, serious relationships and although we don't see each other as much anymore, I would still consider him to be one of my best friends. The closeness and trust still remains...I could still tell him anything.

In the case of the other guy, we have been friends since I was in highschool when we were in a play together. He played the prince and I played the princess. Through seeing each other all the time at rehearsals we became close friends, but since he was 2 years younger than me it was always more of a brother-sister closeness than anything else. We could tell each other anything and I had never felt any "more-than-friends" attraction to him.

At February 26, 2006, Blogger Stacia 

I don't think men and women can be "just friends" without one of them wanting more, whether that's sex or a relationship. I think you can "professional" relationships that border on friendship, but they never really quite step over that boundary (here I'm thinking of my grad school friend Sean, but it's more a friendship based on that fact that we're both in grad school and study the same stuff).

At February 26, 2006, Anonymous Ricky 

Personally I don't think it's possible to have the kind of friendship you have with members of your own sex. I have a dear friend (lady-cop) but there is always a certain amount of sexual tension. There's always gonna be jealousy and stuff.Having said that, I do consider Lady-Cop as my best friend in Albuquerque... so whqat do I know? But if i was a different person than I am today, I would have hopped in the sack with her years ago, which would have changed the relationship entirely and I doubt if we would even be friends today... so, yeah, I have no idea what I'm saying....

At February 26, 2006, Anonymous Sarah 

I don't think men and woman can be "just friends". It's sad but true. I have tried to be "just friends" with a lot of guys but it always led to something more. That's just life. Depressed Married guy might be right.

At February 26, 2006, Blogger Just another American Expat 

Well, in a perfect world, the one you marry is also supposed to be your best friend; your closest confidant. If that’s not the case, then what function would your spouse serve other than just a good lay?

At February 26, 2006, Anonymous spinster 

clarity, I think it's a Harry Met Sally kinda question, and like the movie says I think that MOST male friends would want in yr pants if they could (unless they're batting for the other team, that is!) but until the woman draws the line and says "I only want to be friends" there is always that "if only" idea in the other person's head...but having said that, I think it's possible to be intimate with someone, then cross-over back to being really, really close friends. But it's rare.

At February 27, 2006, Anonymous Vicola 

Hi Clarity. I would say that men and women CAN be friends, as long as they have never ever done anything else. 4 of my closest friends are boys, I don't want to do anything with them and they don't with me. There is no sexual tension at all and they just feel the same as my girlfriends. M doesn't have any issue with them at all although he did have before he got to know them. If the line is ever crossed though, I don't think you can ever go back to where you were. Friendships with my exes all had a sort of edge to them and eventually fizzled out.

At February 27, 2006, Anonymous Jenn 

I think that men and women can be "just friends" - I really believe it. I have been friends with a guy, Jack, since we were in high school. It never went beyond that and it never will. There hasn't been even a hint of it on either side (as far as I know). I don't think it is by any means a common thing but it does happen. And no, Jack isn't gay. ;)

At February 27, 2006, Blogger Nightmare 

Some of my best friends have been women. I like women, I like to hang around them. They never want to arm wrestle, or tell me how great they were in sports 20+ years ago, or want to fight me...they just don't have the testosterone to do that. I'm just too old and apathetic towards guys with small man's complex.

At February 27, 2006, Anonymous autum 

i have had many friends that are male. but, all of my CLOSEST male friends have turned into more, or one os us ended up wanting more. so, i think you can have many friends of the opposite sex, but more casual friends... i think. at least that has been my experience. every time i have become intimate friends with someone of the opposite sex it has ALWAYS come to that point of either going the next step, or getting to the crossroads.

At February 27, 2006, Anonymous TickTrix 

Hey girlie, I need the link to your Cafe Press stuff. Would you be so kind as to email the link to me next time you log onto MySpace? Thanks!!

At February 28, 2006, Anonymous Steph (Khya) 

Can the biological urge for male and female to do what's necessary to procreate be overcome by reaching higher ground?

NO! To survive, we must procreate! Seriously, it can happen, but based on personal experience, someone almost always wants more, and someone almost always gets hurt. The longest non physical relationship I've had with a man who does not have "procreating" feelings for me is with one of my best friends who lives... with another man, yep so for me it's definately... NO, but say that to a man, he won't agree :-)

At February 28, 2006, Anonymous Tenshi 

I agree with depressed married guy. (Come on... cheer up :) ) Most of my friends are guys, but as you said, it usually reaches a crossroads where I have to assert the fact that I am happily taken and don't want them in my pants.

If they could get there -- they would. It's whether or not they can handle your sexual rejection that determines if they are worth your friendship or not. If they leave after you tell them no - then they weren't worth it, no matter how much it hurts. If they stay... they're worth it.

If Mike had a good gal friend of the opposite sex, you betcha I'd be jealous. I know how close a few of my guy friends and I used to be, and to be honest, I felt sorry for Mike the entire time. When they would make me laugh, his entire face would fall, because he wasn't the one that had made me laugh.

Friendships between men and women just... don't work. Sex always gets in the way.

At February 28, 2006, Blogger Kathleen 

Yes, I think it's completely possible for men and women to be friends and just friends. I have very good male friends and they are simply that - with neither of us wanting anything else from the other.

Example: Last Friday I called one phone number twice. The first time I called to talk to the husband. The second time the husband answered and I asked to talk to the wife. I'm friends with both.

Clarity - I think your problem is that men see you and want you because you are so incredibly and intrinsically beautiful. They become your friend hoping for more and then when it's obvious it's not going to happen (men aren't always smart), they get all pissy - or whatever problem you were having.

At March 01, 2006, Anonymous kristoli 

A few years ago I would have argued it was perfectly possible for men and woman to be friends, in fact my partner had a very close female friend that he claimed not to have any romantic attachment to and of course for a while I believed him, I mean she wasn't a very nice person in my mind, very attention seeking, shallow and me-me-me, but just to be sure I became friends with her just to keep tabs, of course they have now been married a few years now, learned my lesson big time ;)

In general though I would have to say that heterosexual men and women cannot be close friends because the interest (or urge) will always be there, it may be dormant a long time but it will come out at some point.

At March 02, 2006, Anonymous dembrat 

i may be in the minority but i do think that it's possible. yes, i'm thinking of a specific instance also. and yes, at one time there were feelings there (on both sides though never at the same time) but we've gotten past that and we're as close if not closer. i don't think this my friendship w. him is the norm but i know w. us it's possible.