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Saturday, July 30, 2011

Platonic Love aka He is Not Your Man So Stop Expecting Him to Act Like He Is


 
I am fortunate to have many male friends. They are in essence my brothers. I turn to them for a male perspective with regard to career aspirations, car repair, and of course,  my love life. Yet, I still strive to keep the platonic boundary firmly in place between us.

You cannot  expect a male friend to always pick up the check during outings, call you everyday, or drop everything all the time to rush to your aid.

Why?

Because, he is a male friend... and not your man!

I have seen many a male-female friendship ruined because the boundary line is constantly being crossed by one or both parties.

Sometimes, the male counterpart in the friendship has deep romantic feelings for the female.  The female counterpart of the friendship may sense his feelings and uses them to her advantage. She has no intention of ever dating him, but she keeps around as an ego boost and because he cheerfully pays for all of their outings. 

A little later down the line, he sees that she is playing him and gives up on dating her altogether. Soon after, he enters into a serious relationship with someone else. The female counterpart gets very angry and  jealous. She starts doing what she can to sabotage his new relationship. Things get ugly fast and now the male counterpart is forced to cut  all ties with the female counterpart.

Another scenario is the male counterpart whom uses his female friend as a personal assistant. He expects her to constantly be at his beck and call. He has realized early on that she has  romantic feelings for him and exploits the situation to his advantage. She has convinced herself that one day he will  want to be in a romantic relationship with her. He does not want her in that way. Yet, he does nothing to quell her romantic fantasies about him. This dynamic lasts for a couple of more years until she finally gets fed up and stops talking to him altogether.

During my Dark Night of the Soul, I was very fortunate to be surrounded by a wall of loving male friends. They kept my spirits up and gave me  huge doses of tough love when I needed it. I was treated to  home-cooked meals, impromptu game nights, and hours of conversation. 

Their loving care, enabled me to walk through my pain and into a new perspective on life. I am convinced that platonic love helped me heal that much faster. However, things could have turned out disastrously if I had  been seeking romantic validation from my platonic male friends.
 
Platonic love is a powerful force which is often taken for granted. Unfortunately, we  have a tendency to use it as a substitute for romantic love. As a result, we ruin  good friendships because of our failure to respect the high value which platonic love has to offer in its own right.


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