I am currently in more friend-zones than I can number with both hands and feet. My hope is that by quelling the idea of the zone’s existence at all, I might be able to finally get out of at least some, if not all.
There is hardly any person with an awareness of the opposite sex – lets add “same sex” in that bracket for this generation of ours – who hasn’t heard the words “Let’s just be friends” at least once while navigating the maze called relationships. As one who’s been on the receiving end of such statements in myriad of creative variations, I can tell first hand the pain and disappointment it brings. To your guys, you’ve just become an unceremonious resident of the not-so-posh estate called the friend-zone.
I remember been drawn into an argument on the subject before I did any in-depth research at all and my conclusion then was “y’all watch too much TV”. After my research, my response remains the same. Backed by an armada of memes, an MTV show and popular sitcom: FRIENDS (from which the term originated), the popularity of the term is no longer a surprise. Neither is our need to replicate what we see, think is popular, in vogue or the “in thing”.
The term is used to describe a situation whereby one of two friends (mostly the male) wishes to enter a sexual/romantic relationship whereas the other doesn’t. While I do not doubt the existence of such a scenario, I refuse the idea of a said “friend-zone”.
I am of the opinion that the friend-zone is hypothetical and non existent, a figment of the imagination of a generation whose definition of relationships is now majorly sexual.
The grammatical kwanta I just unleashed there means the friend-zone only exists because dating/sex seems to be the goal for most friendships. To certain feminists, the friend-zone is another injustice in a world where everything that is wrong is men. To them, the idea of the friend-zone implies a wrong feeling of entitlement to the other person’s affections or sexual attraction as payback for time and emotional investments of being a friend. This is closer to the truth than I’d like to admit. Last time I checked, there was freedom of konji. No one is obliged to be interested in anyone else for any reason. The fact that someone isn’t attracted to you as romantically as you are to them shouldn’t affect the other aspects of your friendship.
To many a guy, to be put in the friend-zone (signifying the unwillingness of the other party to proceed to a new level of intimacy often involving sex as a requirement) is to end the friendship. My take, however, is that the potential lack – or presence as the case may be – of sex/feelings in a relationship shouldn’t be the deciding/determining factor in the destination of said relationship. We should realize that;
- all people of the opposite sex do not exist for our sexual gratification.
- Hence, it is inevitable that our attraction to majority of the people of opposite sex in our lives shouldn’t be of sexual bias.
So, why should we take a filter meant for ideally a select few people in a lifetime and use it to categorize and define all our friendships? The friend-zone comes to existence when one party in a friendship doesn’t want intimacy. My question is why allow sex determine which direction my friendship with someone goes?
A rather disturbing trend is the pride that tends to arise with having people “in my friend-zone”. I daresay in some circles, it is a competition of whose is most populated. Thing is, some people are quite comfortable in the so called friend-zone and don’t feel like they were put there. Whether this is a case of mutual friend zoning, I leave to you to judge. My assertion is that to these, the friend-zone doesn’t exist.
Next time we need to decide whether a friendship should continue, I suggest we let other criteria besides potential for a roll in the sac determine our decision. Criteria like shared beliefs, traits in the other party that you covet and want to develop, character that you want to associate with, attitude to the things that matter to you and skills that might be useful in the achievement of a future dream/goal. These time-tested criteria provide more dependable pedestals for healthier, longer lasting relationships… Or what do I know? ????????????????????
Your fellow friend-zonee,
I’d love to hear your opinions.