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Friend Zone

I was talking with my friend Mike towards the end of March about one of his prior relationships. He'd moved in with a girl who was one of his best friends, and they began sleeping together. They'd always connected on an emotional level, talking and sharing everything with each other, and I consider having sex three times a day to be connecting on a physical level as well.

Suddenly, though, the girl broke up with him, moved out, and said that she only slept with him to keep the friendship alive. Straining to avoid any Seinfeld references - Jerry and Elaine had to have sex to keep their friendship alive in one episode - oops!… Sorry, back to Mike and this girl: a big fat "Huh?" She told him that they didn't "have any chemistry." She and he haven't talked much since, and their "friendship" is essentially a thing of the past.

It's a long-standing joke in "the guy world" that there exists some mysterious "Friend Zone." Guy gets to know girl, but doesn't sleep with girl within some magical time frame, and becomes trapped in this "Friend Zone" from which guy cannot escape. This time frame varies depending on the type of girl, primarily, but typically guys realize that they've reached the Friend Zone when their girl calls them to talk about her boy troubles. Some might say that this is the exact moment at which the guy should have sex with the girl, but from what I've seen, this simply leads to the girl feeling as if the guy took advantage of her (and she is right).

If the guy hasn't figured out that he's in the Friend Zone, and finally asks the girl out, he'll quickly discover his position in the Zone World after being given this line: "I don't think we should start dating, because I don't want to risk what we have." That's the Friend Zone, my friend.

Most guys never escape the Friend Zone. Things get weird between girl and guy because guy wants more than girl will ever give him (some good lovin', basically, or at least some lip smackin'). The guy is faced with several options

  1. Deal with it in a mature fashion, appreciating "what we have"
  2. Keep asking the girl out, hoping that persistence will win him a piece of ass
  3. Ditch the bitch (latter word used only because it rhymes) entirely and pick a new target
  4. Act like a jerk, showing girl they weren't very good friends to begin with
  5. Get girl drunk

Choosing the first, if pulled off, can lead to a great, long-lasting friendship. Sometimes the wondering is better than the knowing. Often, though, it leads to the second, the "perpetual asking/begging."

The third is effective, and may actually lead in some small percentages to the woman realizing what she's missing. This was seen on the TV show Ed this season, when Ed stopped pursuing Carol to date Frankie. You could label this "play the jealousy card" too. The alternative is that the guy moves on and finds a new target for his obsessions, the girl rids herself of a pest. Both lose a friendship, but, so be it. It should be noted, too, that Ed didn't pursue Frankie just to make Carol jealous, and the potential for screwing up another person's week is quite high any time these jealousy games are played.

The fourth one never works, because all the guy has done at that point is to solidify the girl's decision. Even though girls tend to go for jerks1, they don't tend to go for nice guys that betray friendships to show that they too can be jerks.

The last works fairly often, at least for the initial poontang, but often results in severe harm to the guy's nuts when the girl awakens and realizes what the guy has done. The last way to get a girl into a Relationship (with a capital "R") is to make her ashamed of herself.

Of course, any situation which doesn't result in a Relationship seems to fly directly in the face of one key thing: aren't we supposed to marry our best friends? All other things being equal, that's probably true. Unfortunately, it doesn't mean, when we're ready to get married, that we should look around and ask our best friend to marry us. It means the person we're in love with becomes our best friend.

But that in turn begs a new question:: who better to date than someone with whom you already share some chemistry? Someone with whom you're already friends. Someone who still likes you after you've told him of the 37, 14, or 1 guys with which you you've slept/fooled around/made out? Someone who likes you after seeing you without makeup? Someone who likes you even though you watch Married By America? Obviously I'm not saying that every male friend would make an ideal boyfriend - physical attraction is important - but as one of my gal friends says "who better to date than someone you already like?" Unfortunately, she's in the female minority1.

In Mike's case, he succeeded in moving from "we're just friends" to "wanna screw?" Kudos to the Mikester, because he did it without alcohol, and he continued to "get a piece" after the girl's two-week "oh-no-what-have-I-done?" period passed. It lasted a few months. Then the woman freaked. They say men are afraid of commitment?!?! To Mike I say this: you're better off without her. A woman that's compatible with you on both levels (emotionally, physically - I'm ignoring "spiritually" for now) and still ditches you for no good reason after sleeping with you for an apparently even worse reason ("to preserve the friendship")? Buh-Bye!

I know a girl who just married her former best friend and now Official Best Friend™, wedding-band certified. They were friends for a number of years, and she got drunk and made out with him one night (not his doing, thus, relieving him of the aforementioned nut-kicking). They began dating, and it was "weird" at first. After all, you're used to being with someone but not making out, and now you're supposed to make out?

I wonder what's so wrong with that. After all, dating is fairly ridiculous. These days it's not rushing things to be "making out" by the second date - how well do you know the person with whom you're swapping spit by the second date? Not so well. Friends = safe. Strangers = could be an axe murderer. Right? I've had many intimate moments with friends. I've had women cry on my shoulders, hug me, even fall asleep in my arms. Would it be weird to kiss them, if the feeling was mutual and that's where things took us? Not for me.

So what of the "don't want to risk our friendship" bit? Hogwash. Women realize this. I think most of the time they say "I don't want to risk our friendship" they're really saying "I never want to see you naked, ever, and I'd just as soon kiss my brother." In other words, buddy, in the Friend Zone you will remain.

Women - younger women especially - long for a fairy tale romance1. They1 want1 to be swept off of their feet. They1 want1 a whirlwind1 "love at first sight" magical evening with a guy. They1 want1 to be surprised. They1 want1 adventure. They1 want1 intrigue1, mystery1. They1 want1... something new. You? You're old. They know you already. They know what kind of movies you like and where you go out to eat (and what you order). There's little chance you can surprise them. Love at first sight? Sorry, guy. Girl has probably seen you in shirts with chocolate ice cream stains on them.

But guess what? Guys want the same thing. They want adventure, mystery, intrigue, and a girl without chocolate ice cream stains on their shirts. Unfortunately, what we want in life is not always what's most practical or what's best for us. I find myself understanding the "I want something new" point of view, and at the same time personally disagreeing with it. I think comfort is sexy. Connecting with someone on an emotional level is an intimate experience that should be cherished and nurtured. I'm friends with several women whom I'd date, given the right circumstances, and I don't think it'd be terribly awkward at all. After all, what's more exciting than learning something new about someone whom you already care about? To me, that's every bit as exciting as learning something new about someone new, especially if that new girl turns out to be an axe murderer.

Luckily, though, I'm not the type of guy who needs to be in a Relationship. I think that a Relationship (relationship = friends, Relationship = kissy kissy) is going to happen whenever it happens, however it happens. 95% of what I could ever want from a girlfriend I get from my female friends already. I can call any of them at 3am and talk about my feelings. I can go shopping with them. I can talk about what a jerk guys are. I can listen to them talk about things, and basically, I can enjoy their company.

The only things I can't get from my friends (or don't want, as the case may be) is kissing and sex. Sometimes I can even get that (without losing the girl as a friend) if the right things happen. I can cuddle with a friend on the couch while watching a movie, and I can surely hug my female friends, so physical intimacy is possible. Not always at the "naked and sweaty" level, but at a level that meets my needs and wants a vast majority of the time.

What's perhaps quite peculiar about me is that while I love all of my female friends - "friends" are people I love, male or female, after all - I am not in love with them. I've been in love with exactly one person - my ex-girlfriend - but have loved, and do love, many. Kate, Crystal, Crystal, Kelly, Jamie, etc. I love 'em. They know it. But until I've kissed a girl, until we've "dated," and until we've put ourselves in the position to fall in love, I don't really develop those feelings. I may be an anomaly, a freak of nature, but I don't. Am I attracted? Yes. Do I have a gut feeling that a Relationship could work well? Yep. Do I fall in love? No…

So perhaps I'm not in the right position to understand this "ruining the friendship" thing. I started dating my ex-girlfriend immediately after meeting her in Paris, France, condensing the "friendship" phase to three days before we kissed. She and I couldn't remain friends after we broke up, even though I wanted it, because in her words "how can I get over you if we talk every week?"

Going for a Relationship is worth the risk to me. There's always the chance you'll realize early that it's not meant to be, and at that point two people can return to being friends. If it goes on longer, well, then I'll fall back on "'tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all." I'd rather have dated Jessica for five years as I did than have her as a friend for life. Life is a risk-reward trail, and in this case, the reward - the near-perpetual happiness and joy that the right person can bring to your life - is worth nearly any risk.

Of course, I'm not advocating dating every friend. Physical attraction and common sense about your situation are important. I'm friends with several people whom I could never date for either or both of those reasons. But if you're attracted to someone, and they're your friend, and there's no logical reason (i.e. they're a heroin addict, they live too far away to manage a Relationship) not to go for it, then go for it.

The Friend Zone is an excuse. The Friend Zone is "I'm afraid of being hurt" or "you're too ugly to date but telling you we're friends seems like a nicer way to put it." The Friend Zone is the land of excuses and lies. To people who are honest with each other, there is no Friend Zone. You have relationships, and those relationships are deep and run their course. If they involve an attempt at dating and possibly some nookie along the way, well, so be it.

I want to marry my best friend. I want to marry the girl with whom I am the most comfortable. But I've always said that I want "to be happy" when asked "what do you want to be in ten years?" If I'm 95% happy with my female friends, but am otherwise single, then I'd easily count myself among the lucky, among the happy.

1 Vast generalization used here. Deep down I know that everyone is unique… just like everyone else.

41 Responses to "Friend Zone"

  1. Erik, thanks for sharing your feelings... It made me realize a few thinks about myself, about a previous Relationship, and about the next One. I experienced exactly the same "three days friendship, five years dating, not to be friends after breaking up" thing. Thanks again...

  2. Simply put, the Friend Zone licks a variety of balls. Sadly, Method 1 often leads to Method 2. Rejection at this point leads to Method 4, later progressing to Method 3.

    Not surprisingly, getting her drunk it the safest way to go. It'll either crash (leading back to method 3) or flourish (bingo). Hell, my (ex)girlfriend got ME drunk and we ended up going out for close to 2 years. Otherwise we'd still be in the Friend Zone. Weird.

  3. Yep, you hit the nail right on the head, Erik, you're describing my last Relationship. I tried #1, #2, #4, #2, #3 (in that order), not a single one of them worked - she actually came back and begged for continuing the relationship (lowercase) after I ditched her.

    Guess I have be quicker on the next one. Talking is bad.

  4. Here comes the sun

    A veritable smattering of links: Crazy Apple Rumours on possible 3" Powerbooks (with diagram.) Digitally Imported Radio reveals a new...

  5. We seem a lot alike. I've only dated friends and don't really want to start dating strangers (axe murderer thing).

    Girls' emotions are what confound me and most of my fellow males. They have two sets:

    1) The ones they vocalize to you

    2) The ones they hold you accountable to

    I just recently went through a breakup and she's making it hard to be friends (the whole feelings thing). We were best friends before dating and I care for her like family. Do I wish we hadn't been together? No not really. Life goes on.

  6. Having been married for nearly five years now, I could easily had forgotten all of that. But I do remember one girl that I really liked A LOT at the end of high school through the first couple of years of college. I unknowingly was stuck in the friend zone while her friends (and mine) kept telling me that she liked me the same way as I did her. She would hint that she wouldn't go out with me, but other times, she hinted the opposite. In the end I spilled my guts, consequences be damned. It irrevocably changed the friendship, or whatever it was we had, into nothing. I wouldn't change, however, the events that transpired to end the relationship. Sometimes in order to get what you want, you need to risk everything.

  7. Hey... this is the "Mike" mentioned in the article. Good article, even though some details about the relationship were wrong... I didn't move in with her... she moved in with me. She didn't break up with me. I broke up with her because she was doing coke and became a really screwed up person and the friendship slowly went away leaving nothing but sex.

    Like Erik said: When I broke up with her, she explained that she was only sleeping with me because she couldn't bear to lose me as a friend, to lose me from her life, and sex was the only thing keeping us together. Argh.

    That said, I would like to pass on what I've learned, so you don't make the same mistakes as me. 😉

    I've dated girls and turned them into my best friends. These relationships lasted for a very long time (18+ months) and they were very rewarding. I'm still great friends with them today. If not for certain geographical barriers, I would probably still be dating them.

    On the other hand, I've dated my best friends twice. Once was only months ago, once years and years ago. They were best friends and I turned them into girlfriends. I thought it was a good idea. When I stared dating them, I "knew" I did the right thing. Life was great, I was ecstatic. My speakers went to 11. However, both relationships fell apart quickly. In the end, both me and my girlfriends were very hurt.

    Girl(/boy?)friends may come and go, but friends last forever. I know this, you know this, we all know this. This is why dating friends is a bad thing. When you start out as friends, you both have something very important to lose. The friendship. If you weren't friends to begin with, there isn't nearly as much to 'mourn' when the relationship is over with.

    If you date your best friend, you both step on egg shells to not ruin the friendship. You might let the other person get away with things, or even hurt you... you let those 'little personal differences' and problems slide because you're friends. You can't really confront them about many things, because you are afraid of ruining the relationship. Those little problems aggregate and start becoming huge problems. I'm sure most of you know where that leads.

    Recapping... I'm my experience:

    Turning girlfriends into best friends is a GOOD THING.

    Turning best friends into girl friends is a BAD THING.

    But - that just could be me... but I see a similar pattern with other friends as well. Naturally, your mileage may vary. 🙂

    Mike

  8. the breakup

    I've seen it happen. It's happened to me. It's "the breakup". I've seen it very often between friends who are going out. The breakup puts the participants through hell. Often there are only two and occasionally there are more. The worst of these is whe...

  9. I met a girl a while back, and we became fast friends. We hung out, we watched movies, we took walks, we talked until 4am....

  10. here's my take:

    making random girls your girlfriend is GOOD

    making any girl your friend is BAD

    i can sorta deal with your problems if we are dating. i dont have time to deal with all your problems if we are just friends. cause i just dont care.

  11. Thanks for the good word Erik. Ive spent the last year in the Friend Zone (too fat i think) and it inspired me to go out and drop 30lbs. Even though it hasnt worked on her it has worked on a few others. Somethings better than nothing! Jarrod

  12. The breakup

    I've seen it happen. It's happened to me. It's "the breakup". I've seen it very often between friends who are going out. The breakup puts the participants through hell. Often there are only two and occasionally there are more. The worst of these is whe...

  13. Question: What's the worst thing you've ever done to cause a breakup (perhaps between someone you wanted to date and "that other person")? My Answer: Nothing, really. As much as I might like to date someone, I figure they wouldn't...

  14. The Friend Zone

    I just read an old post by Erik (of NSLog();) about the Friend Zone and I'm glad that someone finally found a name for it (epecially since most guys (ie. me) seem to be eternally stuck there).

    I'll write something else later on.

  15. whoa. i am 16, ive been in the "friend zone" for about 4 years, but its at this age that you start to feel it. i am so glad that there are people who feel the same way out there. i wrote a song called BEING IN THE "FRIEND ZONE" and i thought that title would just mean something to me and me only but its good to know that men know what i'm going on about.

  16. Hey Erik,

    Interesting. Based on what you've written about relationships before, I never would have thought I'd be agreeing so much with you. But I am agreeing with almost everything you wrote, from the female perspective. I am coming out of a 6-year relationship with my then-best friend, and we are still great friends. People gape at how "civil" we are. So it didn't work out romantically after all that, but we still have what drew us together in the first place. Not bad, I'd say.

    Of course, I have to complain about something. You neglected an important third reason for a guy to be 'stuck' in the Friend Zone: I am simply not interested in him that way. It doesn't mean he's ugly or that the idea of him naked makes me nauseous. In fact, I have thought several of them were quite cute. It just means I don't feel that way in return and can't even imagine feeling that way. Simple enough, I'd think. As a rather extroverted geek girl, I have to deal with that a lot, and it makes me feel bad, but what can I say? I would feel worse if I dated someone I had no interest in and thereby led them on. I don't go for that sort of thing.

    Most people don't understand this:

    I may be an anomaly, a freak of nature, but I don't. Am I attracted? Yes. Do I have a gut feeling that a Relationship could work well? Yep. Do I fall in love? No…

    But that is how I feel as well, at least about the only other person I've been interested in ever. 🙂

  17. I think you've got a lot right, Erik. I have a relationship with someone that falls into neither the small "r" or big "R" category, and I wonder if anyone else has felt the same. I've been friends with a girl since grade school, and we're now both in our 30s. And I love her, but it's something that I've ever felt towards any other friend, family member, ex-girlfriend or even my ex-wife. What sucks is I don't know really how to put it into words, but what I do know is that some times when we're together, I think I'd do anything to marry this girl, and other times I'm relieved that we've never gone down that road...you know? We share things we never shared with our ex-spouses, but we've never even come close to crossing that line into Relationship territory...is this the kind of person you're best off marrying? I wonder if there could be ways of testing the waters to see if the big R is possible without disturbing the little r...

  18. From a feminine viewpoint, I think the problem is this: For women, the emotional connection's the focus; for men, the sex is the focus. So a woman doesn't think to add "sex" to "friends" unless she's actually attracted, whereas for guys, it's more likely that the mere presence of friendship or emotional connection RESULTS in attraction. And you end up with, yet again, the guy wanting to make the friendship into something that, for the woman, it's just NOT.

    See footnote #1 above, for all of that. Yup, I can generalize with the best of 'em.

    But what Amy said, two posts above this, is true: Sometimes there's nothing wrong with a guy except that he doesn't turn you on. In which case, considering the kissy-kissy with him carries about as much enthusiasm as, say, doing laundry or something.

    That, and after a while it will become obvious to a gal if the guy's only keeping the friendship going because he's hoping to get some. If you're going to be a hypocrite and call yourself my friend when hot lovin' is all you want my company for, then you can go whistle to your right hand for my sympathy.

    Women are human beings. Learn to think of them as such, and to treat them as such, and you'll get along with them a lot better. Maybe you won't have steamy sex with all of them, but that doesn't always have to be the point.

    Side note: I have a friend to whom I keep having to explain that sometimes, attraction just doesn't happen; and I think he read your entry here, because last week he actually said, "Hey, let's get drunk and screw!" Yuck.

  19. I agree with the points Erik made. I especially have seen and told many lately about the fact of how many men and women chase excitement, surprises, and fireworks over comfort, completion, and true intimacy. It makes me feel good that I am not the only one on this logic.

    Recently, I met a nice gal whom several times has tried to put me in the friend zone by crying on my shoulder about all her past assholes. I've seen her try hard to push me away with tales of how many men she had sex with (and regretted), guys who have hurt her, etc. I didn't leave...but I for once also didn't allow myself to become the attentive ear.

    Whenever she would say "all men suck" or "I can't trust any man". Instead of apologizing on behalf of all the good men out there, I simply tossed it back on her lap. Confidentially asking her "so does that mean I suck too?" or "so you don't trust me then?". Lately, I'm starting to see her attitude change...and even becoming more interested and affectionate on a "let's try dating" level. I attribute it to simply not allowing her to toss me into the friend zone. I played the game the playas do. They compliment her, be affectionate, ask her out, etc. They never just keep their distance and listen to all their drama.

    Now it might sound like I'm putting way too much effort into this, but I see it more as the experiment into the often illogical thought process I see both men and women do when it comes to dating and relationships. I personally don't share in the view that it's just ok to have friends. I have male and female friends whom I love to death...but in the end, I'm still feeling a sense that I need more. Love is not something that can be turned off like a faucet. I watch so many people try. I see plenty of men and women who say "I'm not going to date anyone for a year. I don't need anyone." To me, this isn't a good start to prioritize their lives and improve/focus on other things. It's simply more to me a cop-out. It's an illogical thought that somehow all the flakey girls and bad boys will somehow grow up and be relationship-thinking in a year. I always see the same scenario. The person tries dating again after a few months...and they just fly right back into their same old mistakes.

    I don't know if I am totally correct in my thinking. I too would love to find that fulfilling relationship, marriage, the "happily ever after". I believe most of everyone does. The one thing I would say that Erik hit right on the money with...the one thing that even a good friend of mine taught me years ago...is that we should NOT become DEPENDENT on the idea of having a significant other. Fulfillment comes within...it doesn't come from another person. When I learned and understood that, everything became different...and somewhat easier to handle...unfortunately, we still walk in a world of damaged, confused people who still can't seem to get past their own fantasies of what a relationship is over what a REAL relationship is.

  20. Erik,

    I found your blog by accident...but I have to say, as an irregular web surfer, I am very impressed with this post.

    I have found myself on this search for the exact answers you develop in your blog monologue. After intrigue and the first few lines I couldn't help but immediately feel as though I was getting every point you were making. I am the female in the situation and my good male friend is your "first person". I just hope, as I am guessing his sensitive self will, he will understand why now after 7 years of knowing him and truly being only great friends...and going out to dinner at least quarterly as we have, all of a sudden the other night I found myself attracted to him, and found myself thinking about us in a long term life relationship. We are like the same person in a different gender. Thank you for your clarity, honesty, and putting yourself on the web...so those of us with a need to can gain strength in conviction of what might be possible for a relationship never conceived before can have some insight.

    Thank you

  21. I randomly found this site after Googling 'friendship zone'. I just wanted to let you know that I found your writing informative and insightful. Have a nice day.

  22. I really appreciate ur voice through all this, i quite littearly had a situation much like the ones u described. I felt terrible, confused, and at times yes, im a guy and however un manly it may be, i did cry at times. Someone i cared for deeply did not want the same things that i did. However, after reading this i feel great. I feel as if ive found some dirrection and can move on with my life. So for that thank you very much, you are apreciated. People like you make the the world a better place. thx again , ian

  23. Whoa, this is crazy. Erik!! Your so right!! I talked to a friend about my situation ha ha not a guy this time..J/K

    Well, she sent me this link in an e-mail! So, Im posting a comment (which I never do) because I think you've got a point! Here's my story........

    I'm a woman who's known my best friend for about 4 years. We know everything about each other, c'mon he's my best bud. Long story short. We both broke up with our significant others coincidently at the same time. Of course we needed each others company because of the heartaches we just faced. C'mon we're best friends, what are friends for?

    Anyway, one thing led to another. We had sex and it was amazing..!!?? Actually, there was a connection between us since the day we met. We just never took that chance. Your so damn right about your "friend zone" analogy!! He was in my "Friend zone" for 4 yrs!! This was a guy I could talk to about everything! Now, that he's crossed my "friend zone" things have gotten so "weird".

    Anyhow, It's been day's and I still can't talk to him. Now I cant get passed the border we crossed. We talked about "it" and I decided I couldn't talk to him again. Point is.. He was like a brother to me that I never wanted to lose as a friend, vise-versa. Now, we crossed that line and it got "WEIRD". Was it worth it??.. I still don't know. Can I ever talk to him again??.. I still don't know..??

  24. WOW! This is the most down to earth, and right thing I have ever read about this topic. I have atleast 4 friends that are girls that call me their "Best Friend", which I am very grateful for, but it really is tough. There is one girl especially that I share an unbelievable bond with...I am truly myself when I am with her. There is one problem though...she has been dating one of my best male friends for 2 years. He is away because he is a marine and I hear from her every single day..we go out to ball games, to work out, lunch, breakfast, dinner, etc. I feel terrible that I have feelings for her because of my friend that is a marine...it almost feels that I am stabbing him in the back every time I hang out with her. I am wondering if I should just slowly back away from her and our friendship because I know that I can't shake these feelings. It's hard to come to the fact that I won't end up with my best friend, but after reading this now I know I am not the only one. And hopefully the girl I find will become my best friend. Thanks for being open and helping out.

  25. I read some of what people wrote here, I want to comment on one post, that is, how women focus on the emotional, and men focus on sex. It is very sad that she would classified men that way as if to enforce that believe. I am a man and I am very offended by what she wrote. She is a woman so obviously she think and side with women. For some reason, she thinks a woman's emotional need is greater than a man's need (sex). So men are supposed to be emotionally attached just like the women wanted. What about men? They want to physically attached so they can become emotional! Also, the real world shows that many women indeed use this to get things from men. Men would show emotions since women want those, but women, on the other hand, never delivered the physical part.And who the hell is she to tell men to learn to meet women's emotional needs when women would know what men want and still hold out and deny men of their physical needs?

  26. Hey man i have read two articles on this already and i enjoyed yours the best.. I have been in the Friend Zone for about three years now . I love this girl and she knows i do. I have told her my feeeling and she used the " Big Brother " thing. In my opinion she is scared of being loved and cared for the way i do. That might just be wishful thinking , but thats the way i see it. And its not like im not attractive or havent been with other girls since i have loved this girl , but it just never seems to work out because one way or another the girls find out how i feel about her. or i just dont give them enough emotional attention. I have tried to get over her and tried to end the friendship but it doesnt work , so i just keep dreaming and hopeing

    shane

  27. Erik,

    What a wonderful accident to come across your blog entry on the infamous Friend Zone!

    For me, I can only blame my folks' old-fashioned rearing for the reason(s) why I am Governor Supreme of The Friend Zone, but I can't blame them either...they were teaching me what they knew of things. But I didn't have very many friends growing up, so for a long time I had no one around to tell me, "Watch out...you're gonna be receiving a big, fat Hail-Mary-pass into the Friend Zone!" or "Dude, don't say that...you'll never see her again!"

    With that said, I want to make it clear: I have had many more female friends than male ones, and I hold all of my friends (especially my closest ones) dear. Only for a few of them did I pine for something more, and out of respect for their wishes, did I leave them be. But in doing so, I also lost my only connection to them as well, and sometimes a part of me thinks that they wanted to do things this way.

    I'll never know.

    Alas, turning 32 recently hasn't helped much. But I have faith that someday I will make friends with a special woman who will stay with me in the friend zone and also wash up with me in the locker room.

    Thanks for the thoughts, man.

    Moses
    (Current) Governor Supreme of The Friend Zone

  28. Also came across this while googling 'friend zone'.

    In a way, I'm a lot like Moses (the dude who posted above, not so much the dude in the Bible).

    I don't have nearly as many male friends as female friends. I try to be 'nice' to everyone I meet, and would never think of holding back how I treat someone, based on the possibility of a potential relationship.

    That said, when you go from hanging out as friends to asking someone out, you can create something awkward. Especially if that female friend gets a little bit freaked out about it.

    Suddenly, they are not returning your calls & emails. You hear from them occassionally, but you tend to think it is more out of politeness. And of course, even if you do accept you are in the 'friend zone', communicating that isn't all that easy. There's only so many times you can still try and keep in touch before you go from 'friend zone' into 'almost stalker zone'.

    But as has been said here, if a relaitonship happens, it happens, and if it doesn't, that's okay too. Whatever we'll be we'll be and all that kind of stuff.

  29. i met a girl awhile back who i quickly became attracted to. we went out yada yada yada...lil did i know that i was in the friend zone right away...then i met another girl, she and i hit it off like that *snaps fingers* hell now im so glad that i didnt become more than friends with the first girl!

  30. I am trying to get out of the friend zone tomorrow. I have known a guy for a month now. He is in my class and we do homework together. I see him at school quite often. I met his family, we have lunch sometimes, we went to church and went to few places outside of school. I haven't met his friends yet, but I have been invited on a snowboarding trip with his family and other events. I am not sure how to start hinting.

  31. I am a girl, stuck in this friend zone. I mean, I have had lots of guy friends, who have never expressed an interest or we talked about moving forwrd but decided "no" but there is this one guy that I love being with...we have so much fun, we talk for hours, it is so great. i dont think he is perfect..no one is, but he is for me...i love him with flaws and all. I have another friend who i am very close to, whom i have a very brotehrly/sisterly reltaionship. well the first guy told me he thinks i am so great, but he only sees me as a sister. I definitely do not think of him even remotely like i do with guy number two. I don't know if all your theories about how/when a guy develops feelings is true. or that he woudlnt be willing to invest time in someone he is not interested in. my friend invests a ton of time in me..but yet he says "no feelings". he really wnats to find a wife and get married...yet he spends all his time with me. He is driving me mad!!! i think it is because he has this ideal vision of who he should be with....which i do NOT fit. All the women he seems to be attracted to are really pretty, but have nothing in common with him, and wouldnt either give him the time of day or treat him like dirt. sigh. whats a girl to do? i am tempted to mka emyself gorgeous- i have already lost 20 lbs, and am losing more...but frind myself bitter and hope he doesnt wait till then to notice i am a woman...that is so shallow!

  32. 😐

    Hi there, my name is Sandy and I have an ex I broke up with over a year ago.... too make a long story short, he came back about 4 months ago. The physical stuff continued the first night we got back together, .... sexually anyways....

    Fast forward 4 months later, we get up from a nap, he says "isn't it nice to be in the friend zone"..... I must have stood there looking at him with my dazed look for a full minute.... WTF is this?

    I got dressed told him to get the fugg out and NEVER come back, he knocked on my door the next day like nothing happened. I asked him "How many times do I have to flush?"
    Slammed the door in his face.... This all happened this past weekend.

    What do you make of this..... wow did that ever hurt..... sux the big one or what?

  33. That was really well written. You're talented.

    My name's Donny. I fell in love with my best friend 6 years ago. We were so connected and spent so much time together, I felt like I could feel her emotions and thoughts rippling through my body. When we hung out, I smiled so much my cheeks would hurt. I didn't know there was a feeling like that of pure happiness, that was so intense.

    But I haven't spoken to her for 3 years, because she gave me the "I'm like a brother" speech. The feelings of jealousy I developed made me a depressed maniac, so after a few years of waiting and asking and then begging, I told her to never talk to me again, so I could move on with my life.

    To give a clear picture, I'll explain- I'm really good-looking and everywhere I go girls openly gaze at me with lust. So I couldn't, or can't really understand what's up with the "like a brother" thing.

    But at the same time, I understand a little, because I've got a new friend who's a girl. And we really cool with each other. She loves basketball and music. I dig all that. But at the same time, she's way too thick for me to ever do anything sexual. She wishes I would make her my girlfriend and some of my other friends want that too. But even if they're ok looking I still say no. And I try to not hurt them.

    So, it's like if I break hearts, it's only fair that fate threw a girl at me to break mine.

    My life is really comfortable and pleasant right now. But I wonder when we're going to talk again or if I'll ever meet someone for whom I'll feel the same or more. I feel like I'll probably just marry somebody who won't mean as much to me.

  34. To Mr Donny,

    If your “life is really comfortable and pleasant right now”, why would you want to settle for anything less than comfortable? I really know your pain because I been in your shoes years ago and I got depressed badly but it was the best thing that ever happened to me, honestly a blessing from God.
    The Dalai Lama once said:
    “When you lose don't lose the lesson”
    “Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck”

    Young women are not looking for love Donny, they are looking for “lust” and if you want to attract them you need to learn how to trigger feelings of lust when you meet an attractive girl. If you don't know what I ‘m saying, google David DeAngelo and you will find out.

    A girl who has no problem telling you that “You are like a brother” after you declare your feelings to her is everything but your friend. She only care about herself and don't give a damn about you or your feelings. A girl who care about you will understand that you have strong feelings for her and will give you a considerate response (such as “I understand how you feel, but I don't feel the same way at this moment”) but telling you that you are like a brother is just a plain insult of saying that “I need someone that I can be intimate with without any attachment”. Telling a male friend that he is like a brother is pure controlling is make you feel guilt of your feelings like: “How can you desire me if I love you like a brother of mine”. Make you feel like you are a psycho who wants to make an act called “Incest”. Those girls are controlling, plus they go around screwing every guy they lust for and will come back to you to complain about them. (Again they want someone to screw without any emotional attachment)

    Read about psychology, you will found that women who separate emotional needs and sexual needs (unconsciously) are dangerous women that you should avoid to associate with unless you want a short fling. Most of those girls (that I know) did not have a good relationship with their father and when they forge a strong relationship with a male it is very new to them and it becomes impossible for them to move such relationship to a physical level. Its called Insecurity ….

    You should never seek to talk to that girl again. Go on with your life and never look back again. You sound like a prototype of men that women call “nice guy” and those men don't have a clue about dealing with attractive women (NEVER befriend a girl you are attracted to)
    Man, it's brainless for a single man to hang out with women you are not planning to sleep with? Man, you are loosing a considerable amount of your precious time and guess what? You are not getting any younger either, so this is also called Insecurity ….
    It is obvious that you are seeking woman companionship to validate your self worth and you should quit doing that shit. Spend time alone, turn on sport center, play an instrument, socialize with men and play poker, get you a motorcycle or create an online business…..Live your life and women will want to join you (this time you will have a choice to accept them or reject them) and please don't ever beg for a women love, it's a pure turn off (an attraction killer)

    Now I hope that you know why your friend put you into the zone in first place. She was insecure and so you; two insecure people together to create a false sense of security but when they mate (or marry) ……it's a disaster. To be honest, you are lucky she rejected you because she offered an opportunity to work on yourself, and you did a great thing to ask her to never bother you again (and it should stay that way).

    Ironically the same insecure women change when they reach late 30s and somehow become wiser. They wish they can find a man who loves them for themselves without playing the number games they just graduated from. They know the difference between love and lust (they use to call attraction), they are tired of jerks and they want a stable man (they use to call nice guy). The bad part is that at that age, those women don't look as fine as they used to look and their reproductive clock is ticking down. In my experience, I just wonder if those women changed or it just a result of desperation or economic success of recovered former nice guys they rejected a decade before.

    Love requires a lot of work and confrontations; both young men and women are not interested to do any work. For women lust is easier, attraction is there, why work harder? But when they get dumped or cheated on…they feel being used for sex. For insecure men, when they lust for a female, they accept to be in the zone and wait for the girl to notice them….that's lazy. Donny, you showed courage when you decided to get out the friend zone, don't go back being lazy man….be courageous and be selective when you choose women because a lot of them out there are burning, damaged or both.

  35. I want to say thank you for this. I am finding myself in a situation where I was starting to become "worried" about falling into "the friend zone" with a particular girl who I really do consider a close friend who I hope a deeper Relationship might happen.

    I was starting to wonder if there was any way out of this "friend zone" without being an asshole. And you answered that with a resounding YES.

    There is nothing wrong with being her friend, because in the end, don't you want to be with a friend, and not just a piece of ass?

  36. This was well written and is the truth.

    I confessed to a close friend on how I felt about her. I laid everything on the table and told her how much she meant to me. I knew she came out of a bad relationship that lasted numerous years. She told me that she was scared, but I gave her my word that I truly care for her. She has been single for almost a year.

    As a man, I am ashamed to say that I brokedown. She called me in the middle of it and I released my frustrations. She cried as well, and said she did care, but needed time to commit.

    Now I sit here and wait for her. I risked my friendship with her because I care about her so much. In the end, I always believed that men and women can be "average friends," but to click on every level of life with the opposite sex leads to wanting more from either side.

  37. i fucking hate the friend zone. i think its fucking cruel and thats it.

  38. i just wanted to say that i found this blog really interesting, but kind of frustrating.

    As a girl, i had a situation along these lines happen to me
    more or less, i became friends with a guy, but we were both in it purely for more than friendship but in an unspoken rule we got to know eachother - i guess you could say slowly - before anything actually occured.
    i think we both wouldve liked to move things along a bit faster but we live a little bit of a distance from one another and i dont have a drivers licence so those are the factors that made it a little difficult, but it didnt seem to stop his enthusiasm.

    what i dont understand and what wasn't in your blog is i guess things were going relatively well and then i got the cold shoulder suddenly...and i know that he is not the type of person that would sleaze onto a girl and then ditch her 5 minutes later.
    also what i dont understand is the fact that he was very into the idea of us being together, i was too but he was much more forward in sharing his feelings and ideas, then i opened up, primarily because i felt comfortable enough to because he initiated it.
    I guess the problem now is that i was so confused when he started giving me the cold shoulder and just so upset and angry that i left it too long to ask why, and we'd never really had any chance to talk about having a relationship so for me to bring it up might have ruined things altogether.

    I guess i went through the motions slowly, at first when he would make friendly conversation now and again i always told myself it meant i was in with a chance.
    now, i think ive realised that this isnt the case and so any conversation we do have, i am now starting to realise that its good i got a friend out of the whole situation.

    I just wish i knew his reasonings.
    But, i just wanted to point out that its not always the girl, and im not trying to make men sound evil or anything but...if your gonna end it with someone, at least give them a reason...a PROPER reason...the 'friend zone' isnt valid unless you have backup.

  39. I know from personal, empirical experience that there is literally never any possible escape from the dreaded Friend Zone. And if you ever manage to pop that tenuous, amorphous bubble, nothing good ever comes of it. You know why? Because only one person really wants a relationship and the other person doesn't, but is too non-committal/confrontational to say so.

    Also, this:
    http://www.peroxidecomics.com/escape-from-friend-zone-game/

  40. [...] have written about the “Friend Zone” and the problems therein. There are essays by men (many, many essays), essays by women (a few), an instruction manual for escaping, a wikipedia entry on [...]


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