Written by BRETT BODNER / MANAGING EDITOR
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
In our world, there is always an argument about friendship between men and women. Women claim that it exists while men always put it down and say that it doesn’t. Who’s right here? Before I share my thoughts I would like to share the thoughts of some people I spoke to about this topic.
“Well personally some of my good friends have been females. I feel fine having girls as friends and being able to talk to them. Maybe it’s not the same as having guy friends but its worked fine for me. Saying that it’s definitely not the same as having guys as friends or for girls being friends, it’s obviously a different type of friendship, but it’s definitely possible for the opposite sex to be good friends,” said junior student Shane Carle. Fellow junior, Jerry Dean said “Not gonna lie, almost every close friendship I’ve had with a lady, there’s some times when the testosterone is just coursing through my veins man.”
Frank DeGennaro, who graduated last year, believes it is hard for men to become just friends with women. “There are a few exceptions. 1) The girl is dating one of the guy’s friends and you are always around them. 2) You knew the girl since you were young and therefore look at them like a sister. 3) You’ve already had some sort of relationship and both have realized it wasn’t meant to be. 4) Neither side is attracted to each other. However, these aren’t rules, because very often the first three things are little to hold one side from liking the other.”
“Well I think it’s easier for girls to just be friends with guys because for the most part they are just looking for friends. Guys can be friends with girls, but if they had the chance they would totally hook up with them,” said junior Amanda Romano.
Ada Foley is a high school English teacher who strongly believes it is very possible for this kind of friendship to exist.
“I have to highly disagree. All throughout my middle school, high school and most of college experience, I found many of my female friendships ended at one point or another due to catty jealousy and the like. Having males as friends (and focusing on something rather platonic than romantic) ensured that I found a companion that would be more upfront, honest, dependable and trustworthy than many of the females I interacted with,” said Foley.
As you can see, some believe it’s possible while others simply do not.
This argument went viral back in December when two students at Utah State, Jesse Budd and Patrick Romero made a short video called “Why Men and Women Can’t Be Friends,” which you should check out if you haven’t done so yet.
The project was started by Romero when he wanted to make a point to his girlfriend, who was friends with a lot of guys and as Romero put it “led them on.” According to Romero, they had a tremendous amount of feedback as people loved it and currently the You- Tube video has over six million views.
I asked Romero in an interview how he personally felt about the idea of men and women being friends and his answer basically summed up the exact way I feel.
“My honest opinion is that no they cannot be friends...acquaintances yes, but not f riends. I f two people of the opposite sex have what it takes to become best friends then they have what it takes to be a relationship. Sexual tension always enters the picture. I think it looks good on paper but the reality of it is that men and women can’t really be friends,” said Romero.
He hit the nail right on the head with this. In a male and female friendship, very rarely do you see two people who are perfectly fine being friends with another. Usually there is one side who feels more towards the other person. Sadly, the friend thing gets thrown out there as a way of saying “I’m not interested” without hurting the others feelings.
Now I know girls always say “No, we’re just friends” sometimes when making a reference to a male “friend,” but what they don’t understand is that odds are the male feels the complete opposite. For example, there are many girls that I am friends with. However, for a majority of them, I would not hesitate to take things to the next level, but for the moment I accept my role and hope maybe something happens down the road.
This is the way that most guys feel. We never meet a girl and think, “Oh I can’t wait to be best friends with this girl.” Odds are it’s, “I want to hook up right now.”
Something else that factors into why men and women can’t be friends is the idea that sometimes opposite sex “friendships” can ruin relationships. We’ve all seen something like this even if maybe you didn’t realize it at the time.
You’re dating someone and they say that they are good friends with someone of the opposite sex. Then you meet that person and realize that that person clearly has feelings for your romantic partner. After you see this you don’t want them hanging around them anymore, which starts drama, and in the end could be detrimental to the relationship.
There is also one more fact I have to throw out there. Most good relationships are built out of strong friendships. We all know o f couples who began as “friends,” but eventually the feelings grew and the “friendship” became a stepping stone to a relationship. To reiterate what Romero said, if people of the opposite sex have what it takes to be good friends then they have what it takes to be in a relationship. I would also like to add to there has to be attraction there as well.
So do friendships exist between men and women? I don’t think so. They don’t exist when you meet each other, when you get to know each other, post break-up, etc. If you think they do, then odds are you just trapped some poor soul in the friend zone who can never escape their unfortunate fate of simply being friends and nothing more.