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Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Elan Repost - Platonic Relationships

Here is a repost from Elan I wrote a few years back under my pen name, Lorne McDonald. The article seems a little naive now that I've gained some years and a different perspective. Not that there aren't platonic relationships out there, but I don't feel that they are as uncomplicated as I once thought. What do you guys think? Do you have good platonic relationships with male friends that are healthy and unencumbered?

Platonic Relationships
By Lorne McDonald

If you don't have a close male friend, you’re missing out on something invaluable. I'm not talking about a lover, either, but an actual friend, someone you can call late at night, or go to the movies or grab a bite with without the hassle of a romantic entanglement. A platonic relationship with a man allows you a safe excursion into the male psyche where you can explore the land of Mars while he, in turn, can learn the language of Venus. Why is this type of relationship invaluable? Well, one of the main complaints women have in romantic relationships is that they don't understand why men do the things they do. The best person to ask is another man, one who isn't competing for your affections.

When men and women talk with each other without the complication of sexual attraction, they learn to understand each other better. Women can discover the hidden thoughts of men, what they really mean when they say certain things like "I'll call you" or "I need some space." Another thing: a male friend will give you the inside scoop on the "dogs" and how to know when one comes sniffing around. You'll get valuable psychological insight into what a man may or may not find attractive about you. And a male friend will tell you like it is and won't feel the need to tiptoe around your feelings, so there'll be no ambiguous stammerings when you ask point-blank, "What do you think about...(fill in the subject)?"

Because the element of sex is absent, you feel safe divulging sexual secrets and fantasies to him without the fear of of it being thrown in your face later. I've had many long satisfying conversations with male friends regarding everything from movies, politics, and, of course, sex. And in these discourses, I've learned what men fear and what they want but won't tell their girlfriends. This is the kind of candidness that you want from your significant other but don't often get, try though you may. That's probably because there's a certain defensiveness, a wall, that goes up between people who are attracted to one another. The wall goes up from fear of being vulnerable or fear of getting hurt, and lovers who feel free enough to share their bodies guard their thoughts with the vigilence of sentries protecting the palace treasures. With a platonic friend, though, the defensiveness comes down and there's a chance for real communication that is refreshing.

An added fringe benefit to having a platonic friend is that you can go on "dates" and not have to wonder what will happen afterwards. You feel comfortable talking...or not talking. And there aren't the attendant uncertainties that happen when you're first starting to date someone you may or may not become intimate with.

Men who can form friendships with women are often more sensitive, more in tune with a woman's needs. Minus the sexual equation, a male friend is probably the closest to the ideal mate a woman will encounter, because he is someone with whom she can communicate and feel open. And maybe that’s the most important benefit derived from these types of relationships - you get to learn what you truly want in a man…and what you don't want. Your male pal can serve as a schematic for what qualities you should be looking for in your long-term mate. And once you find those qualities, the only other thing you'll need to add


Sharon Cullars Coffee Talk at 7/31/2007 09:35:00 AM Permanent Link     | | Home


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