Friday, June 11, 2010

Friends: How Many of Us Have Them?

Friend. Buddy. Homeboy. Homegirl. All of these terms convey endearment and friendship, but as a people we have performed excellently in the arena of blurring the line of what exactly qualifies as a friend.  Is a friend the person with whom you have grown up? Is a friend that ex-boyfriend/girlfriend where even though only romantic feelings have dwelled, NOW platonic friendship has formed by default post-relationship?  Is friendship defined by a purely platonic nature (“free from physical desire”), or does friendship even need a definition? I will start by, first, confessing that in this subjective discussion, I do not possess the answer to these complex inquiries AS A WHOLE because I am not entirely sure that a single “correct” answer exists; BUT conversation can serve as the canoe needed to sift through this jagged topic.

Often the rationalization of friendship is simple.  If I like you, but we do not have the title then we are “just friends”.  Is this rational? What disqualifies friendship, and how do you distinguish that middle ground occupied by so many? The reality is that categories cannot contain the spectrum of all different friendships as they frequently exemplify the uniqueness of fingerprints.  For the sake of this particular blog (obviously more are to come as this topic is too large for one entry), let’s talk about platonic friendship and friends with benefits.

It is MY humble opinion that platonic friendship does not exist 90% of the time because I disqualify platonic friendship when romantic attraction (EVEN if not acted upon) exists.  The majority of friendships require an asterisk, but the difference lies in the parties’ willingness to acknowledge such feelings.  Some of you are undoubtedly thinking, “Well, I do not have those feelings for my friends.” While that may be true you have neither the authority nor the knowledge to speak for the other party involved.  More often than not one party feels romantically for the other party in a friendship.  This may go unspoken for fear of non-reciprocation, more commonly REJECTION, but it exists nonetheless.  Think about this.  If the opportunity for ANYTHING more than pure friendship appeared (romantic relationship, sex, or otherwise) and you would choose to advance this relationship, would you TRULY consider this person “just a friend”?

Let’s address “friends with benefits” next.  More often than not, in this friendship, the “benefits” serve as the major reason for continuing employment (Get it?), and usually AT LEAST one party knows their intentions with the other party do not include ANY type of relationship in the immediate, near, or far future.  If the benefits stop, so does conversation, and thus interaction ceases. Is this person “just a friend”, or is this person expendable from your life?  

Now, I know not all “friends with benefits” relationships are that cut and dry.  I also know that a number of intricacies fill these relationships, but that is for the NEXT blog!

I appreciate the opportunity to discuss these topics with you once again! My intentions are to provoke thought and provide insight.  A working mind is a healthy mind!  Thanks for checking in the GAME with the Just GQ blog!  Please leave your comments and questions on the blog, or e-mail me at I love hearing feedback from you!  God Bless!

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