If you’re like me, a heterosexual female with heterosexual male friends, you understand just how difficult it is. I mean, with all the falling in love and sexual tension involved. Gah, it’s just so hard!
I’m kidding, obviously. But these are the things that outsiders looking in often think and express. For example, I have a good friend who is (gasp) a boy. I get along with him, we have a ton in common, and I enjoy hanging out and talking with him. You may ask, “So what’s the issue?” Well, for me, there is no issue, but apparently there is for everyone else.
Those looking in on my life automatically assume that my husband is adamantly against this friendship and, to be frank, he’s not. He knows me and knows my heart. I’m not replacing my husband with this friend. To quote Ariana Grande, “A girl can be friends with someone with a dick and not hop on it”. Hallelujah, girl.
Even those close to me who I thought knew me better than most have said things like, “I don’t like it”, “I hope your husband is okay with this”, or “He’s probably in love with you”. I mean I know I’m freaking awesome and it’s probably super easy to fall in love with me (ha) but come on people! Get real. It’s 2015. I should be able to have a male friend without constant debate, right?
I have scrolled through Pinterest and Instagram countless times and been bombarded with ridiculous images like these:
All this does is showcase how far behind society’s views on women are lagging. A woman and man can do more for one another than be a love interest. They can be supportive and encouraging, give each other advice, debate and get into arguments. I can have all of the same things with my boy friend as I do with my best girl friends and I don’t believe this is outside the norm.
One more thing to think about: do you think people are asking my male friend these questions and constantly giving him advice on how it’s unhealthy to be friends with a girl? No. They are not. So, why is it that women are still being perceived as too weak of will to have platonic friendships with men? People still believe women are too emotional or hormonal to not fall madly in love with every man who gives them attention, whether or not the attention is romantic.
I’m not saying that in some cases, these types of relationships aren’t unhealthy or there are never feelings or sexual tension involved in having a friend of the opposite sex (or same sex for that matter). I’m just saying that we need to remember the age old saying: “Never assume, it makes an ass out of u and me.” I hope that if I ever have a daughter she can have real and genuine friendships with both men and women, no matter her sexual orientation, and not have to constantly worry about people judging those relationships.