Ask Ashlea

Can guys and girls just be friends?

Friends? Totally.
Best friends? That’s where it gets complicated.

Let me start off with a quote, taken from the movie ‘500 Days of Summer’
‘A guy and a girl can be just friends, but at one point or another they will fall for each other. Maybe temporarily, maybe at the wrong time, maybe too late or maybe forever.’
 

So, just friends?

I don’t think this causes much debate, friends are people you like to hang out with, who make you laugh and you enjoy being around. Gender has no say in whether you fall for them or not. But best friends? It’s complicated. I do think it’s possible for a guy and a girl to be best friends and not develop feelings. It may be the goofy kind of relationship where you embarrass yourself way too much in front of them, or have gross conversations that you skip the feelings and just see them as more of a sibling than anything. Maybe you value your friendship so much that you fight off any sort of feelings because you don’t want it to ruin what the two of you have. I do think it’s possible, but I think the chances are pretty slim, too. I mean let’s face it, you’re best friends so you are with each other all the time. You know everything about them, their habits, their behaviour, their secrets etc. You’ve got them all figured out and memorised like the back of your hand. You know them so well, it is so easy for you to know when they are not okay, despite them saying so, and you also know when the time is to either cheer them up or let them be. You know how to make them happy and that’s all you want to do, or when they are sad and need someone to talk to, they will always come to you. You’ve got to that point where you’re so comfortable around them that you can sit in silence, doing your separate things and be happy. Where you can make a fool of yourself and not feel completely embarrassed because they will laugh with you. You’ve met their family and your parents know about them. You can talk about everything and anything and have had plenty of DMC’s and late night conversations, where you’re surprised when you look at the time. You look out for each other and know that if you’re ever in trouble they will always be there for you. You may even get to the stage where you do everything together, it’s weird if they’re not there. You both have your inside jokes that can make you both cry with laughter and everyone else around you rolls their eyes because they don’t understand. You’ve got to that point where you are both so invested in each other, you know every little thing about them and time with them is invaluable.

So if you have that type of relationship with your best friend, congratulations, you have something incredibly special. Now let me ask you a question, with everything I’ve just said, what is the difference between that relationship and a romantic one? Physical intimacy. That’s it! And most of the time best friends hug or hold hands, so there’s only a couple of things you don’t do. So, developing feelings for somebody whom you’re already emotionally intimate with is almost inevitable. Let’s face it, you’ve already got the foundations of a beautiful relationship. I mean, how could you not fall for them? So now, I guess the question is:

Will a romantic relationship ruin the friendship?

This is a question that will never have a black and white answer, I’m afraid. So if you’re in this position I definitely recommend you think it through… a lot! I think the biggest thing you need to take into serious consideration, is if your feelings are true. You have to be in the mindset of ‘I really want to kiss him’ rather than ‘I wonder what that would be like’. You should be thinking ‘I would love to spend my life with them’ rather than ‘I don’t want to see them with anybody else’. You’ve got to think that you have really strong feelings for them rather than you’re just intrigued to find out what it would be like.

After all of this pondering, you should come to a conclusion. You have feelings or you’re curious. If a decision is hard to come by, then leave it for a while. See what your subconscious concludes. Then you need to think some more. If you have feelings for them, think of every alternate way of telling them and what may happen afterwards. The main thing you need to think about though, is if you tell them and they don’t feel the same way, will that ruin everything you have and make it weird between you two? You’ll never know until it happens, but primarily you need to weigh the positive results with the negative.

  • Can you live with yourself if you have to hide your feelings every time you’re with them? Is it fair to you?
  • Is your relationship so special it would kill you if it ended because you told them how you feel?
  • What would it be like if you never said a word and found out years later that they felt the exact same way but you were both too scared to tell each other?

Whatever decision you make, just make sure you’ll be able to live with yourself without having any regrets. Who know what will happen if you never try? It could be the best decision of your life, or it could ruin a great friendship – but maybe it’s something you can both get over and laugh about in the years to come.

Is the risk worth the potential outcome?

I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you!

Always,
Ashlea

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