Debunked: Opposite Sex Friendships
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Debunked: Opposite Sex Friendships

I asked 15 guys about their take on girl/boy friendships. Here are their stories *bum bum*

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Debunked: Opposite Sex Friendships
express.co.uk

As a girl whose very best friend in the world was a guy for fifteen years (HA hey Will), along with many other refreshing friends who also happen to have a single X chromosome, the question of whether guys and girls can be "just friends" is a simple one to me. Of course you can be friends with guys as a girl or friends with girls as a guy (or whoever you are naturally attracted to). I have been in friendships that feel more like an extra brother than a potential boyfriend, and I have been in relationships where I have no worries about who my boyfriend is friends with. But writing this as a single opinionated girl with a large amount of guy friends helps no one. Sooooo I turned to the boys.

I asked 15 guys, of varying ages, both with and without girlfriends, three questions.

Well my sweet guy friends all have one thing in common - they are firm in their opinions. I did consider that the pool would be biased due to the fact that they have managed to be friends with me (a girl) and the fact that I have the tendency to keep oddly confident people around me (hey what would Olivia Pope do, ya know). However, their opinions were helpful in helping me try to understand the male perspective. So, let's get down to it.

1. Can guys and girls be "just friends"?

Every single one of these guys said yes, they can. But, some of them had a little more to add. I had three guys tell me it's all about the boundaries, and one of them saying it's the intentions from the beginning. I also had one of them say that being best friends and not leading to something is impossible (interesting Max, interesting). One of my friends pointed out that not only do clear boundaries and intentions help with this, but that maturity is a key factor, that being able to not create a "false sense of compatibility between friends of the opposite sex" simply comes with age (thanks Spencer, your answers were articulated beautifully, my dude). Overall they all seemed to agree that "just friends" is not a complete myth. Thanks, boys.

2. From a 1-10, how often would you say platonic friendships led to something more?

This question was one I really wanted to know their opinions on, as a girl who has both been the genuine friend that doesn't understand why their girlfriend isn't my biggest fan (even before I open my big mouth), and as a girl who has had a crush on a handful of my "friends" (you know who you are, lil heartbreakers). Ask and you shall receive y'all, they wanted to elaborate on this one even without my prodding. Now these answers ranged all across the board, so we are going to look at it as not often (5 and below) and often (6 and higher) for the sake of readability. 53% of the boys answered not often, leaving 47% answering often. These answers seemed too close to call, but their elaborations made sense. I had one wise friend (hey Ben) point out that it's likely because of the fact that we are all attracted to the people around us, whether it be emotional or physical, we tend to surround ourselves with people we like (duh so the possibility of dating exists). Austin pointed out that when you have the trust and communication you need to have healthy friendships, it tends to make sense when that can turn into attraction (spoken like a guy with a good mama, #proud). The boys that said it was unlikely did not elaborate, but I guess they just don't see wedding bells with their girl-bros. All in all, the numbers were close, but the opinions were well thought out. Communication is key here.

3. How comfortable are you with a significant other having opposite sex friendships?

This question was meant to make them reflect on the first two, putting them in a more honest place. WHEW! It did something alright. They acted like they had had this exact conversation before. There were three words that got pretty repetitive in these responses - "boundaries" "trust" and "depends on the guy." Now keep in mind that I refuse to surround myself by misogynists, so my pool was biased. I had Triston and both Spencers pointing out how they wouldn't date someone they didn't trust, so this isn't a problem. I had Alex point out how he would not only not be bothered by it, but he loves when his girlfriend (hey Allie miss you babe) is friends with all of his guy friends. Four of the fifteen pointed out that while they don't care significantly, they prefer when their girlfriend is hanging out with guys in a group of people rather than one on one. Every boy that elaborated (some of my friends just put "comfortable" or "not comfortable" *rolls eyes*) said something about trust. SO it's not that they want to hypocritically have friends that are girls while making a fuss over your bro on your Snapchat story, it's more about the trust they have in a relationship.

In conclusion, I got answers for both parties that question the "just friends"- those who are concerned about their significant other's friends, and those who want to be more than friends with a friend.

For the first, the answer was so simple - trust. They all, no matter their varying experiences, told me that they need to be able to trust both their girlfriend and the guys they're friends with. I think it's so interesting that girls talk about how they know the intentions of a girl that is talking to their boyfriend, but we don't give guys that same credit. Don't get me wrong, I'm not advocating for some possessive bf/gf to try to control you, I'm pointing out that trust goes both ways. Your significant other needs to trust you, and you need to respect their concerns enough to have a conversation and figure out a plan.

For my other party of people, my girls and boys stuck in the friend zone, let me tell you something that may annoy you - it depends on the friendship. Every time I thought I saw a true trend in the "of course it could turn into more, when you're close with someone it turns into attraction even for small moments," I would get another notification with "no way." It just depends. They seem to think it could turn into more, with some of their friends, but not with others. Unofficial friend zones, just make a move, we've survived a pandemic, you've been through worse than rejection. Losing a friend sucks so bad, but so does not knowing where you stand.

So my concluding advice is to trust your significant other. Appreciate your friends for what they are, friends. If you want it to be more shoot your shot bro. If not, it is in fact possible to be "just friends."

Thanks to all the boys who answered my questions and my 5 questions after the initial ones. I must consider you a friend if I asked you, huh? LOL. You guys rock. Your girlfriends are lucky, and your platonic ones are too.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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