Alright, people. I’m here to settle this issue once and for all: yes. It is completely, 100 percent possible for men and women to have platonic friendships. I am continually exhausted by the rhetoric that suggests every guy and girl that are just friends either a) secretly have feelings for each other, b) have had sex at one point, or c) will end up having sex at least once. It’s simply not true, and I’m here to tell you to chill out and let friends be friends no matter what gender they are.
I have a handful of very close guy friends whom I have never been physical with – not even a drunk make out session – since we became friends back when we were 18-19. We’re at the 26-27 age range now.
We’ve been friends while we’re single and when we’re in relationships. They’ve watched me go through boyfriends and I’ve watched them go through girlfriends. I’ve been their wing-woman at bars and they’ve told me when I need to man up and tell a crush how I feel. While a couple of their girlfriends have been wary of our friendship at first, once they got to know me and saw me interact with them, they realized I’m in the Bro Zone and relaxed.
But here’s the thing: I think it’s unfair that people always immediately suspect an ulterior motive to platonic, co-ed friendships. I know we’re all in our twenties or thirties and have plenty of trust issues by now, but that doesn’t mean you have the right to randomly be jealous of a girl your boyfriend has been platonic friends with for eight years.
Now, I’m not saying that I’ve never thought about what it would be like to hook up with my guy friends, or that they’ve never thought about it with me. Let’s be real, we’re only human, and I know most guys wouldn’t say no to sleeping with their friends who are girls if the girl wanted to.
But just because we have the ability to be attracted to each other or hypothetically would have sex with each other doesn’t mean that we would ever act on it. When I decide to be platonic friends with a guy, it’s because I know we both enjoy each other’s company and there is an understanding that neither of us want to hook up with the other.
Example – One of my friends invited me to his bachelor party with the group in New Orleans last summer because that is just how fucking platonic we all are. (Yes, his fiancée was cool with it. She actually invited me to her bachelorette, but I opted for the bachelor party, because #duh.) If I can go spend a weekend partying and going to strip clubs in one of the craziest cities in the country and not drunkenly hook up with any of my guy friends, then listen to me: we are in the BRO ZONE.
Plus, I think having platonic co-ed friendships is a very valuable thing for both sides. I get insight from my guy friends when I’m confused by how a crush is talking to me and I offer them advice when they’re pursuing a new girl. When I was sad after getting dumped and still questioning what went wrong, only my guy friends could drop the hard truth bombs that my girlfriends were too nice to say to me. And when they’re in fights with their girlfriends, I tell them if they’re being a dumbass and help them make things right.
So don’t be scared or nervous to develop a good friendship with someone of the opposite sex. As long as it’s obvious to both of you that neither of you want anything more, then you can have a healthy and mutually beneficial friendship.
And most of all, stop feeling threatened by your boyfriend or girlfriend having friends of the opposite sex. If they insist that they’re nothing more than “just friends,” believe them. Get to know the friend before you become jealous or unnerved by it because most likely, there’s not a damn thing to worry about. .