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Why Can’t Men and Women Be Friends


By with 96 comments
a man and a woman be friends with each other

Have you ever thought why men and women can’t be friends? Or do you feel they can be friends.

Men and women can be friends, yet not become friends in the real sense.  Isn’t this the biggest paradox in the relationship of men and women?

So, I best thought to write about this controversial topic today!

I wonder if you remember the good old movie When Harry Met Sally. In it, Billy Crystal tells Meg Ryan that a man can never be just friends with a woman because attraction gets in the way.

Who could have guessed how that question would become a much talked about topic for researchers.

Can Men and Women Be Friends – What Studies Show

A number of young men and women were asked to rate their attraction towards each other in a survey conducted by the University of Wisconsin.

It was discovered that men were more attracted to their female friends and were keen on dating them, than the other way around.

Simply put, if men were given a chance they would want to take more opportunities with their women friends.

However, besides these researches and surveys, many women still believe that men can carry on a pure and healthy friendship with women, free from any other kind of thought.

“Between men and women there is no friendship possible. There is passion, enmity, worship, love, but no friendship.” ~ Oscar Wilde

Why Men and Women Can’t Be Friends

There are two sides of the story. Let me try and explain the view point from what both men and women feel about being friends with each other.

Women generally feel that it’s impossible to have real friendship with men. This is because as the friendship develops, men will want something more than a plain platonic friendship.

They would want to elevate the relationship to a romantic level, or take it further sooner or later – in most of the cases.

Similarly, men feel that it’s impossible to be friends with women, especially when they find them attractive and spend time with them.

However, I feel that if both men and women want to be friends they can, but they need to have trust in each other.

For a woman, a friendship is more about having trust that anything else.

When she says she needs a hug, she simply just wants a hug. However, when a man says he wants a hug, he might have other motives in mind. (Sorry guys, this is just a general observation!)

Both, men and women have to learn to confront and control the existing feelings (sexual tensions and feelings) they have.

They need to talk out things on a straight level and learn to deal with it. But again, you can’t dictate your terms, nor can you be sure that they will agree to be friends without such thoughts and feelings.

I wonder if you’ve seen this recent video that went viral, which tells you more about why men and women can’t be friends. Look at what it has to say!

Why Men and Women Can’t be friends ~ YouTube Video

Did you notice something in the video? Funnily, in the beginning of the video all the women said that men and women could be friends, while the men said no.

Later, when the same women were probed further, they agreed that men and women can’t be friends, because they re-thought and felt that yes, their male friends could have feelings for them.

The men however, always said that they can’t be friends with women because most of them have hidden feelings for their friends.

“Men kick friendship around like a football but it doesn’t seem to break. Women treat it like glass and it goes to pieces.” ~ Anne Morrow

Bottom Line:

Everything depends from person to person and how they take their relationship. It depends a lot if you are single and married, and that’s when a major difference comes up between men and women being friends.

You can be friends with the opposite sex. However, chances are that either one of you might want to take things a step further. And when that happens, be ready to lose a friend.

Sometimes, just as we see in the movies, misunderstanding takes place between men and women when they are friends.

This happens because for one of them the relationship transforms from being friends to a romantic one. Such one-sided change of thought in a men-women relationship often breaks up the friendship.

So, if you are willing to keep your safe distances, handle your feelings and remain in control, there’s no harm being friends. Just be honest with each other.

“Friendship without self-interest is one of the rare and beautiful things of life.” ~ James F. Byrnes

Hey! Let’s take a poll and see what you all feel about today’s post and question raised.

Did the poll result come your way or was it contrary to what you thought? Let me know your reaction in the comments.

A lot depends if you are ready to live up with your decision of making friends with the opposite sex.

Remember, you just need to be honest with each other, keep a safe distance, and not to cross the line.

Over to you

Do you think men and women can be friends? Have you been friends with the opposite sex, if so, did you find being friends easy? Share your comments below.

 

Photo Credit: Freedigitalphotos


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Profile photo of Harleena Singh

About Harleena Singh

Harleena Singh is a positive thinker and a freelance writer. She loves to write inspiring and thought provoking posts on self-improvement, family, relationships, health, and other aspects of life. She's not another personal development guru, but just an average person with great life experiences. She's also a blogger, who loves to share her blogging knowledge and experiences. Network with her on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+..

96 Comments

  1. Profile photo of Anne Lyken-Garner

    Anne Lyken-Garner

    October 23, 2012 at 6:16 pm

    This is a lovely, short post, Harleena. I enjoyed reading it.

    I love that you took up the challenge to write about this very controversial topic. I do however, disagree with the general premise. (I know you said it differs from person to person).

    I think that men and women can be friends. This is purely based on my own experience. I’ve been friends with some guys for quite a while. I think that if a man knows for sure that nothing can EVER happen between you and them, they will come to a settled position in the matter. My male friends know that I’m totally loyal to my husband – that our friendship will remain innocent at all times. They don’t fancy me and have never tried to do anything else but be my friend.

    BTW, have you posted extra articles this week? I visit each week and usually only see one new article. Today there are 2 new ones.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 23, 2012 at 7:07 pm

      Glad you enjoyed the short blog post Anne!

      I just thought of the topic and felt it might lead to an interesting discussion, and would be a nice way to know the views of everyone as well. :)

      Yes, everyone is free to his or her views, and that’s why this made a perfect poll post – the first on the blog!

      Absolutely! I think in your case as a married woman, once your guy friends know your mind that you are not interested in anything other than friendship because you are married and love your husband – things were very clear right in the start, so there’s no question of anyone trying to be anything other than friends with you – isn’t it? However, we really can’t say if they fancy your or not, because that’s how you might think, whereas there might be secret admirers among them too ;)

      There are now post twice a week Anne as I had mentioned in an earlier post I had written about changes. This started ever since the first guest post on the blog. So, you can keep a look out for new posts every Tuesday and Friday.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  2. B k chowla

    October 23, 2012 at 6:22 pm

    Of course they can be friends. Very much will depend upon two individuals.

    I can quote my personal example.My best friend for years has been a lady.Between the two of us, we have never ever given an opportunity to our respective families to question our friendship. All it needs is…trusting yourself.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 23, 2012 at 7:15 pm

      Welcome to the blog BK!

      Yes indeed, men and women can be friends, though a lot depends on both of them and how they are with each other, or to what level they want to take their friendship.

      Nice to know that you have a lady friend for years. I guess your respective families must be at ease because you must have clarified things out right at the start, and friendship just as I mentioned, is based on trust. That’s the foundation, which I’m sure both of you have ample in your friendship.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

      • B k chowla

        October 26, 2012 at 5:49 pm

        Absolutely.

        Our families are aware.Least one can do is to develop a family which trusts you. And,except for a good friendship,nothing else has ever crossed our minds.

        • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

          Harleena Singh

          October 26, 2012 at 6:37 pm

          Nice to know that and thanks for your contribution. :)

  3. farouk

    October 23, 2012 at 6:24 pm

    I agree with you- its all about biology and that’s why there is no walk around.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 23, 2012 at 7:17 pm

      Glad you agree Farouk!

      However, I do wonder what others have to say, and hope you took the poll too! There can be many pros and cons to whether men and women can be friends or not, though studies mainly suggest they can’t. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  4. Lisa

    October 23, 2012 at 6:44 pm

    I have always thought it would be hard to be friends with ex’s so the survey surprised me so far. Some people still have feelings for their ex so staying friends could make life quite complicated. Some people thrive on those complications. It will be interesting to see your final poll in this Harleena. Let the debate continue on :)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 23, 2012 at 7:24 pm

      Absolutely Lisa!

      Ex’s are an exception where friendship with them is concerned I think. I guess why would anyone want them as friends when you can find better friends. :)

      Yes indeed, if you still have feelings for your ex, then ideally you should be with them and not living separate, which is what amazes me too as I have a known person undergoing similar situation. She is still fond of her ex, though prefers to stay away. And friendship with her ex is a far cry for her too. It does complicate things if you still wish to be friends with your ex, after all that you have undergone.

      Thanks for stopping by, and yes, let’s see what the poll results show. :)

  5. Debbie

    October 23, 2012 at 9:32 pm

    Very interesting Harleena.

    I do believe that the best marriages start with being friends first.
    When I was young I had three guys that I was friends with. 2 of them died at different times (1 from a car accident the other from war) The 3rd one and I tried to make more into our friendship, but it did not work out. We did just stay friends.

    After listening to the video, which was quite interesting, my thought is the younger adult would have more trouble just being friends (especially guys), but as we get older we can become friends much easier. My hubby and I have a couple that live next door. Him and me have become more friend s and will ask each other for advice etc. One difference is that we are of different ages and we are both married and respect each other and our own relationships. My take is that after we mature with age, it is more likely that we can develop this kind of relationship with the opposite sex.

    I do however believe strongly that a good marriage does need to start with a good friendship. This lays down a stronger foundation for the future.

    Thanks for sharing this post, like I said, VERY INTERESTING TOPIC!

    Debbie

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 23, 2012 at 10:17 pm

      Glad you found the topic interesting Debbie!

      I ditto your words about the best marriages that begin with being best friends with one another, that’s how I learnt more about my husband before marrying him. :)

      Nice to know about your guy friends you had when you were young. Yes indeed, your observation about young men finding it more difficult to be friends with women as compared to matured men is wonderful. I guess as we age, we tend to become friends with the opposite gender with ease because we really have nothing to loose as such. With younger men and women,just as the video indicates, the scene can be different. Often times they tend to get carried away unless the develop trust and understanding in their relationship, and remain firm about their decision to remain friends – which isn’t easy because of their age factor.

      Another factor is that if you are married, happy, and secure in your relationship with your spouse, then being friends with the opposite gender wouldn’t be a matter of concern to either sides – whether you are young or old. Just as in your and even Anne’s case, you can be very good friends with guys and vice versa. However, if there are problems in a marriage or relationship and either of the spouses becomes friends with someone and starts sharing their marital problems with them or start depending on that third person for advice, then there is bound to be a proper drift in the marriage.

      Thanks for stopping by, and sharing your pearls of wisdom with all of us. :)

      • Debbie

        October 23, 2012 at 10:30 pm

        You are right. If you have a strong marriage you can be friends with the opposite gender, but if the marriage is not strong, those relationships can lead to trouble. Thanks for adding that to my comment.
        Debbie

        • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

          Harleena Singh

          October 23, 2012 at 10:44 pm

          A strong marriage is like an unbreakable bond, and petty things like becoming friends with the opposite gender really can’t affect it. But yes, I’ve seen spouses go astray when there is a problem in their marraige, which again is natural for them because they seek a person whom they can share their feelings and emotions with and that third person then becomes their new friend, instead of their own spouse. This will result in trouble.

          Thanks :)

  6. Alice Chan

    October 23, 2012 at 9:50 pm

    Great job tackling this topic, Harleena!

    I’m personally experienced many times when guys wanted to be more than just friends with me, and I’ve been attracted to men who, for one reason or another, aren’t viable romantic partners. So, this is a delicate matter for sure, so thank you for addressing it so well.

    Having said that, I’m not sure I agree men and women can’t EVER be friends. If the definition of friendship is that there must be NO attraction whatsoever, then, I’d agree that men and women can’t be friends. Otherwise, I think we need to give ourselves more credit that, just because we find someone attractive, it doesn’t mean that we can’t have a non-romantic, non-sexual relationship with them. We have a mind that can moderate our behavior and expectations. So, we all just act on our sexual instincts, then we can’t be friends with someone to whom we’re attracted. Otherwise, it’s a matter of conscious choice. :-)

    Thanks again, Harleena!
    Alice

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 23, 2012 at 10:41 pm

      Welcome to the blog Alice – nice to have you over!

      Glad you could relate your personal experiences with the post and found it of value. :)

      Absolutely! Each one of us has our own views about men and women being friends, and I also feel they can be friends, provided they don’t cross their limits of friendship. Just as Debbie mentioned earlier, as we age we tend to make friends with ease as compared to the younger generation as seen in the video where attraction does play a very natural and major part.

      If we can control ourselves and be ready to have a simple platonic friendship with the opposite gender, then by all means the friendship between men and women will be a healthy one. It is indeed a matter of a conscious choice as you rightly mentioned. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  7. Deone Higgs

    October 23, 2012 at 11:44 pm

    Awesome topic, Harleena.

    And to answer your question, Yes, I do think men and women can definitely be friends. However, a lot of things would have to be taken into consideration. Such as, but not limited to, age, experiences, preferences, even geographical location.

    Personally, I have many female friends, but one would imagine that is the case because of my preference. I also know from what many of them have said regarding my preference, if it were the other way around they would be interested in being more than just friends.

    On the other hand, I’ve had life experiences that have taught me to be sure if I wanted to mix friendships with sexual intimacy. The two are like oil and water. Once the lines are crossed, it’s difficult to go back to the way things used to be.

    In the video, I can certainly see why the poll was mixed. At that age, it’s hard for men to control their sexual urges… at least more than women that age. Priorities and focus is also a deterring factor.

    Ultimately though, my answer is yes, they can be. If they so choose to be. And it has to be an equal decision made by both parties. One can’t want to be only a friend and the other want more. That’s a disaster just waiting to happen. Picture the movie “Unstoppable” with Denzel Washington. That’s what that scenario would be like. :D

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 24, 2012 at 9:56 am

      Glad you liked the topic Deone! I thought it would make an interesting one too :)

      You’re absolutely right about taking the things you mentioned into consideration. So, there can’t be a rule that applies to all because it would largely depend from one individual to another and the way they take things – isn’t it?

      It also depends on how and to what level you want to take your friendship with the opposite gender. Some people are just alright with maintaining a platonic friendship while others are alright by taking it a step further, while still others don’t even mind making it almost like a relationship that’s more than a friendship.

      Yes indeed, you cannot and shouldn’t cross the lines where friendship and close intimacy is concerned, because you would really loose a true friend in that case who was only interested in a clean and clear friendship.

      The video shows the reactions and feelings of the younger adults where attraction plays a major role, so one can’t expect them to think like us, who are a little mature now.That’s why age matters a great deal, and also the fact whether you are single, married, dating, or not – isn’t it?

      Men and women can be friends, though as you rightly mentioned, both of them should want to have the same level of friendship without one wanting more out of it, which then doesn’t work out. Ah…that was a good movie example!

      Thanks for your wonderful contribution, and let’s see what the poll results show finally. :)

  8. Annie Andre

    October 24, 2012 at 12:13 am

    Yes i do think men and women can be friends. Of course i have had some experiences where the other party thought there was more but there wre other times where i’ve had truly deep friendships with the opposite sex. You can’t know until you try and only then will you know if you can continue the friendship.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 24, 2012 at 10:58 am

      Nice to know that you think men and women can be friends Annie!

      I guess there are more votes for ‘yes’ than anything else so far, which is wonderful and quite opposite to what the video shows. Or perhaps the video is mainly about younger men and women, where they speak about their experiences that are generally based on physical attraction, besides other things. :)

      However, I wonder if they can be friends when either one of them has feelings more than of a friend for the other. I guess not then in that case – isn’t it?

      Yes indeed, you need to try and experience things to know if it’s possible or not.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  9. Jodi Heal Now and Forever

    October 24, 2012 at 1:12 am

    I am surprised by the poll too. But I participated. I guess I am more like platonic colleagues than friends. A women who was a colleague that supported me; I’d call her a ‘friend’. I guess it is about the definition.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 24, 2012 at 11:01 am

      Glad you participated in the poll Jodi!

      Yes indeed, a lot depends on the way each one of us defines friendship. What works for one may not work for the other, though at the end of the day we all want friends. Some are comfortable with a straight and clean platonic friendship, while others don’t mind being a little more friendly.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  10. Adrienne

    October 24, 2012 at 3:04 am

    That is really hilarious Harleena that every woman in the video said yes and every guy said no. I for one believe that you can and I have several male friends to prove it.

    One of those male friends I met when I was 14 years old so there was no attraction when we met. We’re just friends. Now a few of my friends wanted to date me when we first met but I pulled the friends card but they said that was okay. They really wanted to have me in their lives so we’ve remained friends after all these years. They are married and happy and we’re still good friends. That attraction part died a long time ago.

    I also have a couple of gay friends and my very best friend is one of those guys., I think it’s pretty safe to say there is absolutely no attraction whatsoever.

    I think it depends on each individual and yes, you can be attracted to someone but also feel that their friendship is more important.

    Great question you posted here and you’re getting a lot of response.

    ~Adrienne

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 24, 2012 at 11:38 am

      It sure is Adrienne!

      The women in the video said yes initially, though they later changed to no when probed further about what would happen if the guys liked or were interested in them, whereas they boys always said no. This is what happens when one of them likes or is attracted to the other, without the other person being interested in anything other than having a clean friendship.

      Your case sounds exceptional where you say you know this guy for so long and there was no attraction! Or perhaps there was and you didn’t know about it ;)

      But jokes apart, yes they can be friends if you draw your lines clear right from the start about what you will or will not take in a friendship. Just as you mentioned, you need to be very clear about things. Nice to know that you are still good friends, even though they are happily married and settled now. Yes, the attraction part is mainly there when you are younger I guess and lessens down as we age I think.

      Yes indeed, with gay friends the scene is clear and quite different. I guess I might just have to write another post about friendship with single, married, or gay friends too one day!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with all of us. Oh yes…the readers are generous indeed and I love their views being shared for this post here. :)

  11. jessyesit

    October 24, 2012 at 3:33 am

    Yes! They could be friends..it just depends on the individuals involved.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 24, 2012 at 11:40 am

      Welcome to the blog Jessyesit!

      Glad you agree that they could be friends, and yes, a lot depends on the individuals and how they take their friendship to be.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  12. Galen Pearl

    October 24, 2012 at 4:00 am

    I have a couple of male friends. I think it’s possible, but it’s also true that there is a low level of underlying sexual tension. I think you just agree to not acknowledge that and respect the boundaries of the friendship. It works for me. Not sure what the guys would say!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 24, 2012 at 11:48 am

      Glad you could relate to the post Galen!

      I agree that the low level of sexual tension does remain, no matter how much we may deny it. I guess it works best to make things very clear about what you are comfortable with in your friendship, and what’s not. The guys would respect your decision I guess, though I wonder whether they can keep their hidden feelings in control!

      Thanks for stopping by, and let’s wait for the poll results to decide on this post. :)

  13. Betsy/Zen Mama

    October 24, 2012 at 5:59 am

    I just love When Harry Met Sally! One of my all time favorites. Yes, men and woman can be friends when it’s as couple friends… you know when you and your husband/boyfriends get together with another couple. I don’t really have any men friends who aren’t married that we see together. In fact it’s pretty much the same with my woman friends. Luckily I’m such good friends with the only man that matters – My husband!!

    Great thought provoking post!!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 24, 2012 at 12:06 pm

      I loved that age-old movie too Betsy!

      That’s an interesting point about being friends as couples. But I’m sure, just as everyone else’s views here, they can be friends with single people too of the opposite gender – isn’t it?

      I can understand your views because it’s again a choice or preference to be friends with friends of your husband or the other way round. That works well and is a safe friendship too, though can you really make friends in the real sense that way’s or are they more of acquaintances you meet sometimes?

      Ah…you’re like me then, because I also believe that your husband is your best friend – there can be no better friendship than that, and I’d also written a post sometime back about it. :)

      Thanks for stopping by and adding more value too the post. :)

  14. Praveen Rajarao

    October 24, 2012 at 7:34 am

    This is an unusually short post from you Harleena. But I loved the subject. However, I think friendship is really possible between men and women, especially if you ask me, I am completely comfortable with a good pure friendship with either sex.

    The video did show 2 sides of the women as you have rightly pointed….made me re-watch the video after reading your comment below :-)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 24, 2012 at 12:17 pm

      See, I’m trying to get better with my post length Praveen!

      Glad you agree with the majority of people here, provided it is clear and clean friendship – isn’t it? I guess that’s the most important aspect about men and women being friends. That way’s you know that there can be nothing else that can develop from such a friendship.

      Yes indeed, the video shows the women say yes and no, giving both answers. I guess when they were questioned further whether they would be friends or not with men, if the men were interested or liked them, they changed their answer to no! I think it made them think and realize that in such a case, there can be no friendship at all.

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post. :)

  15. Ashley Porter

    October 24, 2012 at 8:04 am

    Such an interesting topic Harleena.

    I used to think it was possible but I believe there would be some attraction on either persons part. But overall I think they can be friends as long as boundaries are in place.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 24, 2012 at 12:43 pm

      Welcome to the blog Ashley!

      Glad you found the post interesting. Absolutely – there is bound to be a hidden attraction for the opposite sex in most of the cases, and such things if left unattended could lead to serious issues that are beyond friendship. However, like you mentioned, if we have our cards laid out about what we would take or not take in a friendship – we can be friends with the opposite gender.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  16. Sylviane Nuccio

    October 25, 2012 at 12:27 am

    Very interesting post, Harleena. I love this subject.

    I remember years ago my brother saying that there are no such thing as friendship between a man and a woman. And as you mention in your post, for the most part it’s true.

    More women than men do believe in opposite sex friendship because men have a much stronger sex drive than women in general. In my country we say that women’s sex is in their head as for men’s sex it’s.. well, where it physically is located. I think that it’s so true.

    I’ve known of some friendships between a man and a woman that ended up in a relationship or marriage. At this time I can’t really think of a friendship between a man and a woman that lasted that way.

    Thank you for this very interesting subject.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 25, 2012 at 11:38 am

      Glad you liked the post Sylviane!

      I guess your brother was right in a way, though the votes here show that they can be friends. However, I personally feel that a friendship within a boundary of trust and faith is what really works with the opposite gender. Even if one of the partners has an interest in the other, then their friendship will misfire.

      Yes indeed, for women their friendship is platonic and they take it as a clean and clear friendship. But for men, I doubt if it’s ever the case, and sooner or later it lands up to be more of a physical attraction often leading to other things than friendship. I’ve seen very few cases where men and women have been friends for years, especially in young adults.

      Ah…that’s what happened in my case, where our friendship turned into our marriage, but because we were both ready and wanted it that ways. However, if it was just one side wanting and not the other, then the friendship might have just ended right there if things weren’t made clear initially.

      Thanks for stopping by, and let’s see what the poll says. :)

  17. Hajra

    October 25, 2012 at 12:42 am

    Because I have some male friends who I know are just friends, I believe men and woman can be just friends. Really.

    Maybe the attraction comes in and it might get awkward for some, but sometimes it is just about the friendship and nothing more. But yes, my closest friends are females. That is because I have studied in a girls college and that is when making friendship is at its high!

    But yes, if you ask me then I would say it really is possible! :)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 25, 2012 at 11:47 am

      Glad you agree Hajra!

      Yes, if it’s just about friendship and there is no question of having any other interest in each other, than a clean and clear friendship works in most cases. But if there is attraction, and you know that your male friend is attracted to you, would you still call it friendship?

      Ah… having girls as friends is a completely different story, and like you, I’ve also mostly studied in an all girls school. But when I did shift to a co-ed, there was never such kind of a real friendship because men don’t think the way women do – no ways. Very few might.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  18. Manickam Vijayabanu

    October 25, 2012 at 7:15 am

    Wonderful subject and surely a never ending story. :)

    The video is awesome and from timer 1.31..it clearly displays the two ends of woman’s mind state about friendship. Quite interesting to watch, and their answer reflects they like the fun on it though aware about it. I believe you have pointed very well.

    To me, I am comfortable on both sex, and pretty sure it’s absolutely based on individuals. If we could enjoy the relationship between Father/Daughter, Mother/Son, Sister/Brother then maintaining true friendship between either sex surely not an issue.

    But same time,I should agree you can not share each and everything with your opposite sex friend as you are comfortable on same sex close friend. Yes. That’s how human biological chemistry works. There are enough biological research and study has done on this, and science always..TRUE. :)

    If you just need a good friend on opposite sex..Yes. Truly possible.

    Thanks for the nice post Harleena.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 25, 2012 at 11:57 am

      Glad you liked the subject Manickam!

      Yes indeed- I think the women are comfortable with a platonic friendship and took it that ways in the video initially. But things changed when they were probed later, because they must have realized that if their guy friends are attracted or interested in them, how can they be real friends. :)

      Nice to know that you have no problems being friends with either genders, though friendship between family members is quite different than being friends with the opposite sex outside the family – isn’t it?I guess the attraction or interest factor comes in, which doesn’t happen in the case of your own family members.

      Some things you cannot share, though there are cases where you can even share much more than you would with the same gender. It all depends a lot from person to person and how they define friendship.

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post. :)

  19. Vidya Sury

    October 25, 2012 at 11:45 am

    “When Harry Met Sally” is one of my all-time favorite films (except for the ending) and when I watched the movie for the first time, I thought it fit one of my “friendships” perfectly – but then, only until I saw the ending. Both of us agreed that the ending spoilt it all :D. I definitely think men and women can be best friends. I have some very close men friends, who, I secretly think sometimes, are as good as the soulmate girl friend. If there is an undercurrent of attraction, we choose not to respond to it and the mutual respect simply strengthens our bond. Essentially, it also means we can talk about anything without getting sidetracked by our genders.

    Ultimately, it also depends on the individuals. But yes, men and women can be friends. . For me, it works just fine.

    I took that poll – and am glad to see the “yes” to this question got the majority of votes.

    Very interesting post, Harleena! I loved it.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 25, 2012 at 12:25 pm

      It sure was a nice movie Vidya!

      Glad you agree that men and women can be friends, and nice to know that you have some good men friends too. However, don’t you think that this is because you are happily married and there’s a strong bond of love and trust between your husband and you? Also, being friends only happens when you clarify the limits of friendship or define what you are willing or not willing to take in a friendship.

      In your case, I wonder how does it work because perhaps you might choose not to respond to the undercurrents of attraction, but is it the same with the men? And are you sure they are really not attracted and interested in you (it might be just hidden from your eyes!) ;)

      Ah…yes, the poll votes are much awaited too and are mainly showing a ‘yes’ so far. Let’s see how it all turns out.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with all of us. :)

      • Vidya Sury

        October 25, 2012 at 12:38 pm

        Very good questions, Harleena :-)

        I got married at 33 – and knew my men friends long before that. And yes, I share an excellent relationship based on love and trust with my husband, who also has women friends from long before he and I met.

        Interestingly, I did not clarify any limits explicitly with my men friends. Our relationship strengthened over time. Maybe we did not express anything about expectations because both had the same goals? :D I know for a fact that the attraction exists – after all – finding someone attractive is not a crime. We acknowledge it, and as I said, choose not to take it further. Sure there is a lot of teasing – but we instinctively respect that invisible line – and cherish the wonderful bond we’ve developed. Amen to that :D

        Love, Vidya

        • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

          Harleena Singh

          October 25, 2012 at 1:16 pm

          Interesting indeed Vidya!

          Seems like a rare case never heard of. :)

          It’s wonderful that you have such men friends and your bond gets stronger by the day. Or perhaps you knew them when you were quite young, as in that case also there is no question of interest or attraction.

          I agree that your friendship exists along with the attraction, though wonder as to how the men are able to deal with it without taking it further. ;) Now of course that you are married and so must your friends be the case is different, but I talk about the time before your marriage. It sure is good that there was always a respect factor between your friendship, which is so rare nowadays. Also, I think a lot depends on the location and the simplicity of the individuals as compared to the fast paced cities.

          Thanks :)

  20. Shelley Lundquist

    October 25, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    I do think men and women can be friends. I have male friends who I share with and have never felt I could not. I think it is about individual connection. When there is no ego and there is only caring, anything is possible.

    Enjoyed your post. I always find it interesting to see how different people think. :)

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      Harleena Singh

      October 25, 2012 at 10:47 pm

      Glad you agree Shelley!

      Yes indeed, it is about individual connections and how each one of us takes our friendship. I guess when there is no attraction from either side and you are friends with one another purely because you care for each other, everything is possible.

      Thanks for stopping by, and yes, the post has had lots of views and now we need to wait for the poll results.:)

  21. Barry Wells

    October 25, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Really interesting post today :)

    I had to laugh during the video, all the girls saying yes and the boys no… then the turn around with the girls when asked about hooking up….. Funny but very true of the younger people.

    I think there’s an argument for both sides really. Personally i think yes we can be friends with the opposite sex but we need to be considering our partners and their feelings as well.

    I have some very good female friends that I’ve known for years, as does my wife (with boys/men).

    Would either of be comfortable with them having a night out with those opposite sex friends as opposed to bumping into each other and talking? Not to sure about that one :)

    Interesting topic Harleena

    Barry

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      Harleena Singh

      October 25, 2012 at 10:57 pm

      Glad you found the post interesting Barry!

      Oh yes…the video was funny, especially when the girls changed their version and switched to a ‘no’ later, while the boys said what they felt right till the end – their true feelings. :)

      Absolutely – that’s why it makes a good controversial kind of a discussion – isn’t it? You are so very right about making friends, but caring for the feelings of your spouse, which is when you are married. I guess when there is trust, love, and care for one another, your partner would never mind you making friends with the opposite gender – just as in your case, where both of you have friends with opposite genders. However, if either one of you felt insecure in a marriage, or were jealous, or there was any kind of lack of trust, or marital problems, I don’t think it would have been possible.

      Night out with friends isn’t something I personally would be comfortable with, though some couples are alright with that too. I guess it depends a lot from person to person and to what level they want to take their friendship. Though I wonder what the scene would be had you been single, or when you weren’t married ;)

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with all of us. :)

  22. Mayura

    October 26, 2012 at 12:44 am

    Hi Harleena,

    I think this is a sensitive topic to talk about. I believe men and women can be friends. But not with everyone :) I feel, it depends on perspectives and their density of emotions (I jus’ made it up ;)).

    Oh my gosh… I remember some of my friends when I think about this. They used to think girls like ‘em when they looked at ‘em and smile. lol :D Remote attraction. Who knows what’s going on in their minds?

    Well, anyway, as I feel, more of the younger girls don’t speak what’s in their mind ;) I have experienced it with my school friends. Even though they need something badly, they say NO first. But next time if I ask it again, they say YES and again say, ‘they wanted it earlier too but did not want to interfere’ ;)

    There were some girls that think boys need to understand what girls imply ;) They wanted more than friendship and waited for boys to ask ‘em out. But no one did ;)

    Anyway, they are based on my experience and from my point of view. This is a kind of question that has many influences I guess, such as culture and so. So I’m not gonna find an answer for this one ;)

    As I feel, it’s better to remain in control which is hard if the person is too emotional :) What would you suggest if someone can’t control himself/herself Harleena? It’s a good topic where adults can relate and advice younger children.

    Cheers…

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 26, 2012 at 9:50 am

      It sure is Mayura!

      That’s nice coming from a youngster like you, but you are right there. You can’t really become friends with anyone and everyone unless you don’t have that same level of connectivity – isn’t it? And yes, emotions play a major role, which for most young men isn’t an issue, though am glad you feel that ways. :)

      Oh yes…boys will be boys and talk like that, while the girls will have their own share of girlish talks. Haven’t we all gone through those years (speaking of myself as you are still young!) Girls are more emotional and reserved at first I think, though again there are various kinds, but that’s the general opinion I think. And yes, they do wait for boys to make the first move – again in most cases.

      Culture and your location also play a major part, besides other things when we talk whether men and women can be friends. Also, not everyone is of a friendly nature and might not be keen to make friends or might want more than a friendship in some cases, and when both parties want something different, friendship takes a back seat.

      I am no authority to suggest Mayura, yet from what I feel all I can say is that if you have a close friend of the opposite gender and you feel you are attracted to her/him, and it’s tough to control your feelings, it’s best to talk things out and discuss about how you are feeling. Sooner or later they would come to know of it, which might end your friendship. Also, you never know if the other side is also feeling the same way as you are. If so, then maybe your friendship can turn into a beautiful relationship if you both want that. Hope this helps.

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post. :)

  23. Hiten

    October 26, 2012 at 3:02 am

    Hi Harleena,

    Great post and topic, which has already sparked up lots of discussion.

    Indeed, I believe that men and women can be friends. However, from a guy perspective, this is usually easier if the guy is not attracted to the girl. If this is the case then being friends is harder. It’s the same if the girl likes a guy and the guy doesn’t fancy the girl. Again friendship is tricky.

    It’s best when neither are interested in each other in a romantic sense!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 26, 2012 at 10:00 am

      Glad you liked the post Hiten!

      Oh yes…I thought of the topic and knew instantly that it will gather up lots of views, being such a subject. :)

      I agree that they can be friends, as is the general view so far. As you mentioned, from the guys side isn’t it very rare that they aren’t attracted to the girl or interested in them? Yes, unless they are married, or old, or gay etc. I feel such feelings would be present in most cases.

      If both sides or even if one of the partners has such kind of an attraction or interest in the other, then such kind of a friendship wouldn’t really be a friendship, and would turn into a relationship more than a friendship.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  24. Roz Bennetts

    October 26, 2012 at 5:09 am

    Hi Harleena,

    Fun article :-) From my personnal experience the answer is a qualified yes as I do have very good male friends but I’d be lying if I hadn’t been aware of some attraction of a different kind from both directions at some point. The key thing is those thoughts cannot be present in a friendship so they have to disappear or be made to dosappear – once they have gone a proper friendship can take place, which is what I have, but if there were any thought of anything else from either side it’d be impossible!

    All the best, Roz

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 26, 2012 at 10:36 am

      Welcome to the blog Roz!

      Glad you enjoyed the article. Nice to know that you have good men friends, and yes, I am also glad that you acknowledge the fact that there is always that hidden attraction that is present. Yes indeed, those feelings or attractions have to go before you can really have a clear and clean friendship, which I feel is rare – unless you talk out things. However, a few people strongly feel that you can be friends even when the attraction is present by just not acknowledging that aspect and be friends with mutual respect, though I wonder how would that work. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

      • Roz Bennetts

        October 26, 2012 at 3:03 pm

        Hi Harleena,

        Thank you for your reply.

        If the attraction is present then yes it’s possible to have a friendship if those feelings are managed very tightly, but whover said that must acknowledge that it’s a distraction to the friendship, takes some effort to control and is a somewhat unsatisfactory situation. It’s got to be risky!

        • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

          Harleena Singh

          October 26, 2012 at 3:16 pm

          I agree Roz!

          It was Vidya I think who mentioned that she is able to manage things well with such a situation and they share their friendship based on respect even though they know the attraction is there, which they tend to keep aside and ignore. Isn’t that amazing?

          • Roz Bennetts

            October 26, 2012 at 3:27 pm

            They’re obviously handling it really well – it takes a lot of self control, honesty and generosity to be in a situation like that and listen to your (latent) object of your affection talking about their new GF/BF!

            • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

              Harleena Singh

              October 26, 2012 at 6:18 pm

              Absolutely – it did sound amazing because they are able to control things and yet be good friends for so long. I guess such cases are rare, and if it’s working for them, it’s wonderful.

              Thanks :)

  25. Cathy Taughinbaugh

    October 26, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Hi Harleena,

    Men and women can be friends, but the video is interesting. I’ve had many men friends throughout my life and after having three brothers, I’m very comfortable around men. It does all depend though on the situation, but it is definitely possible.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 26, 2012 at 10:39 am

      Glad you agree Cathy!

      Ah..yes the video caught my eye too, and I liked the way women changed their answers to the question when they were probed further. :)

      I guess you must have made it very clear to your men friends the boundaries of your friendship, which must have been respected, and there must have been the trust factor there too – isn’t it? Without these basics, I don’t think friendship can take place.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  26. Jeevan Jacob John

    October 27, 2012 at 3:34 am

    Wow, great topic Harleena :)

    I actually don’t know (Well, compared to everyone else here, I was little experience with relationships because I am young and because I am an introvert; I don’t much of a social life).

    But, I believe they can :)

    Of course the feelings will still be there (It is part of our human genes, but true relationships can be maintained :D).

    Like many others said earlier, there are many other factors involved – like if you like that particular person even before you became friends.

    Or may be, you may gradually start to like a friends (okay, we all like our friends, but over time that like has the potential to be something else like love :D).

    And of course, the situation will be different for people who can’t control their emotions (none of us can
    fully control our emotions, but being able to control them even partially can help a lot).

    Great post!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 27, 2012 at 10:56 am

      Glad you liked the topic Jeevan!

      I can understand about the lack of experience and more so if you are in introvert, it is’t easy being friends with the opposite gender. :)

      Oh yes…feelings, attractions, and emotions are all part and parcel of being natural I think. However, if you want to be friends you need to have your boundaries set, and surround yourselves with trust. I guess only then can a real friendship develop – isn’t it?

      Yes, there are many factors like age, location, liking for the person, and how you define your friendship. But if the liking goes beyond a level of friendship and turns to love, then it really cannot be called a simple friendship because it might change into a romantic relationship or even marriage. Of course, it should be mutual from both sides, and it’s wonderful if it does, because there is noting like having your friend as your spouse – ask me :)

      You do need to keep yourself in control, and if you can’t, it’s best to talk out things and clarify before it affects your friendship.

      Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the post. :)

  27. akhilendra

    October 27, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    A thought provoking post,

    I think men and women can be friends, these issues are more seen in those cases where either of them is looking for a partner. If both of them are settled, then there are no expectations therefore, no issues. And even if either of them is looking for partner, it depends upon the individuals involved in the relationship.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 27, 2012 at 3:01 pm

      Welcome to the blog Akhilendra!

      Even if men and women are not looking for partners, they can be friends I think, or else all such friendships would have resulted in a relationship – isn’t it? Yes, if both are married and then become friends, issues can be there or can’t be, though the chances are less likely because they have crossed that phase. It all does depend a lot on the individual and how they define their friendship.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  28. Corinne Rodrigues

    October 27, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    This is a great choice of a topic, Harleena and I love the discussion you’ve managed to generate!

    I have always found it easier to get on with men than with women, Harleena. Possibly being the only sister to two brothers didn’t help. ;) I have great men friends who I’ve for close to thirty years now. Yes, at times there have been undercurrents of attraction, but putting the friendship above everything else helped. We’re all married now and continue to be good friends though in different cities. We do make it a point to meet when we’re in the same city. Interestingly, some of my friends wives find it easy to confide in me, even if they’re having problems with their husbands!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 27, 2012 at 10:52 pm

      Glad you liked the topic of discussion today Corinne!

      I thought so that it would get a lot of different views because the topic is such. :)

      I’ve also often noticed that a single sister with brothers are friendlier with the opposite gender as compared to those who have only sisters as siblings. Wow! 30 years is a nice long time, and I wonder though if somewhere they were also connected with being friends with your brothers, as some of my cousins who have brothers are friends with the brothers friends too, right when they were young, and that friendship carries on to date for them as well.

      Nice to know about your friendship, which sounds quite like what Vidya also mentioned, and you are both lucky to have such friends where even though the undercurrents of attractions remain, yet it doesn’t affect your friendship in any way. Or perhaps the fact that you all don’t meet that often and its occasional is a factor too. Yes, I’ve also seen the wives get closer than the men after marriage, which is great too.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with everyone. :)

      • Corinne Rodrigues

        October 28, 2012 at 11:51 am

        These guys have no connection with my brothers, Harleena. They were friends I made, we shared common interests, worked together on some common projects and remain friends for life. The undercurrents of attraction were very passing at a certain stage, more from them – now they’re just friends. One of them even took me to meet the girl he eventually married, when he met her for the first time – she came with her father! ;) But she and the other wives don’t see me as a threat – though the friendship is definitely between their husbands and me. :)

        • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

          Harleena Singh

          October 28, 2012 at 1:37 pm

          That’s wonderful indeed! I agree, those undercurrent attractions are present in the initial stages I think and as we age it lessens down, and they are more from men than from women too.

          That’s sweet :) I guess he needed the views perhaps from a friend and women’s point before deciding to marry her. You surely are a lucky and unique case, and I am glad for these wonderful friends that you have in your life. :)

          Thanks once again. :)

  29. Steve Rice

    October 29, 2012 at 1:46 am

    This is a great piece, Harleena! I like that the opening research you site is from UW (near where I live) :)

    That said, I don’t really know what I think.

    Of course, as a gay man, friendships with women are not a problem generally for me. I navigate them easily because there’s never a worry. If my friend says she needs a hug, that’s all she gets….but when I try to turn the tables on my perspective and ask your question “Can gay men just be friends?” it’s a different ball game.

    Of course, I have gay male friends that are just friends. But there is a definitely different dynamic. Especially if there is attraction between the two.

    That is not to say that it’s ever acted upon, but it is there. My partner and I were talking about this just the other night. We met a new friend in our town and he came over to hang out. We talked and had a drink and got to know each other and it was nice.

    After he left, my partner and I talked about the experience because there was definitely some sexual energy in the room, but it obviously wasn’t the time or situation to act on that. But it was really good to just admit that it was there and be able to talk about the experience.

    Ultimately, I think that honesty and openness is key, but that’s often not what we’re taught and not what we teach others in relationship with us most of the time. We often punish others through passive aggressive behavior. We harbor our insecurities instead of talking about the reality of what is true.

    Then when a relationship breaks down, we feel betrayed and wonder how it could happen.

    Really powerful insights. Great conversation starter post! Brava!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 29, 2012 at 9:50 am

      Glad you liked it Steve!

      Nice to know that the University is somewhere near your place, so you can relate more to it. :)

      I can understand the situation where gays are concerned, and yes, they really have nothing to worry where friendship with either genders is concerned. However, when there is friendship between gay friends where there is an attraction between the two, it might turn out to be a similar case as mentioned here – isn’t it? Especially if only one partner is interested, and the other is not.

      I guess if it’s a clean and clear friendship between people and they can share things, just as the person who visited your place, even though you felt there was something more to it but it wasn’t evident or didn’t really show up, it works well.

      Absolutely! Being open and honest is the key in friendship, and in all other relationships too. I wish more people would realize it’s importance and bring a change into their lives by it.

      Thanks for stopping by and your words of appreciation. Nice to have you over. :)

  30. Lisa

    November 3, 2012 at 3:41 am

    This is a great question and a well written article. Thanks for sharing it.

    I personally feel that men and women can be friends. That isn’t saying there won’t be desires and longings for more but we are adults, after all. We are certainly capable of controlling the feelings we have. Feelings and actions are two very different things. I like this statement, “… if you are willing to keep your safe distances, handle your feelings and remain in control, there’s no harm being friends.” I think safe distances – what I call boundaries – begin in the conversations we have. When topics are safe, actions are more likely to remain safe.

    Lisa

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 3, 2012 at 12:53 pm

      Welcome to the blog Lisa!

      Glad you liked the article and could relate to it. :)

      Yes indeed, they can be friends, though when longing and attractions set in, the pureness of a simple friendship often turns into a romantic relationship – isn’t it?

      If we can control our feelings and stay within our boundaries, and trust one another – it surely does work out. However, we really can’t guarantee that the conversation we are going to have would be a safe one or not, because we don’t know about how the other person is going to think or react to what we say. But yes, if we clarify the limits beyond which our friendship must remain, there should really not be a problem.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  31. Ahsan

    November 9, 2012 at 9:51 am

    The perception of friendship differs from person to person. But I agree with your points. Generally, a man starts friendship with woman, then he wants more to develop intimate relationship. I love this lovely word in man & woman – platonic friendship :)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 9, 2012 at 11:43 pm

      Glad you could relate to the post Ahsan!

      Yes indeed, the perception of friendship depends and differs from one person to another. However, just as the video showed, the men mostly disagree that there can be platonic friendship between men and women, while the women had different views when questioned differently.

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  32. Andrew Kardon

    November 24, 2012 at 8:53 pm

    Great post, Harleena. And an age-old debate.

    While I think men and women can be friends, as you mentioned, inevitably, the guy’s going to want something more. Sadly, it’s just in our jeans. Er, genes! A guy can have all the best intentions and really care for a woman as a friend, but the moment she shows any affection (a slight kiss on the cheek, holding hands, a big hug) even if meant completely in a platonic way, the guy will misinterpret and set his radar off.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      November 24, 2012 at 9:01 pm

      Welcome to the blog Andrew!

      Yes indeed, they can be friends, though if they keep their distances and keep it at the platonic level. According to the research and video too, it’s generally the guys who mentioned straight away that men and women can’t be friends because their feelings go beyond the platonic ones, whereas the girls felt differently. But I agree, it can work both ways and for the guys too. :)

      Thanks for stopping by. :)

  33. Koundeenya

    January 11, 2013 at 4:49 pm

    In my opinion, a man and a woman can always be friends. I have seen many such people and they are still friends. But I generally see a problem, when one of them gets into a relationship, he/she might have to face something unexpected. If the third person can understand the bond of friendship, it’s completely okay. But it can be worse, if not. I hope, you get it what I meant.

    Thank you

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      January 12, 2013 at 11:34 am

      Yes they surely can be friends Koundeenya!

      However, I think if either one of them begins to have feelings for the other that are beyond normal friendship, things can turn the other way – isn’t it?

      You mentioned a good point, and yes it becomes tough for the third person to accept their friendship, though again there are some cases (and friend’s above who mentioned too) where even their partners are good friends with each other after marriage. Nevertheless, such cases are very rare.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views. :)

  34. Hossain

    January 31, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    I am totally agree with you that a man and a woman can’t be 100% pure friend. Nature has made man and women to just for procreate like every leaving creature. And that is why they are always attracted to each others by sexual attraction. This is nature..

    We can’t stop our natural habits for ever. For example- we can hold our breath for some time, but we can’t stop this. Exactly like this we can hold our sexual feeling for a certain period of time while we are with opposite sex friends but nobody can’t stop that sexual feelings.

    Here a question will arise that- how many people are still maintaining their friend ship without any sexual feeling? Here I would like to say that who says they’re still maintaining 100% clean relationship without any sexual feeling, they would be abnormal or they are unable to feel sex or they are tailing lie.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      May 26, 2013 at 5:00 pm

      Hi Hossain,

      Sorry for the late reply – seem to have missed this one somehow, though I’m glad am here now.

      Yes, by the way you mention they can’t really be friends, but just as a few commenters mentioned, they have very good friend’s from the other gender, though how that works out I wonder. If you can keep your distance in your friendship then perhaps you can be friends, which again only some can keep – isn’t it?

      I agree with you there – the natural urges and feelings that come by cannot be stopped, and in that case the friendship doesn’t really remain the pure friendship you desired earlier – the stats change then.

      Ah…good question. but if you read some earlier readers comments, they are doing very well and still have friends with the opposite sex. What feelings they have hidden within themselves – is a point to ponder I would say. Perhaps they are hiding their urges and feelings, and portraying they are good friends, while from the inside those little sparks are alive. Differs from person to person, though frankly speaking, I doubt such a friendship if there are no boundaries laid out – to really work.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views :)

  35. Ferb

    February 3, 2013 at 8:24 am

    Hi Harleena, I think is depend on how a person think and different people have different opinions so some might say yes and some might say no.

    To be honest, I don’t know why I hate girl so much now. What I’m seeing on girl friends with me now they’re just trying to make guys to like them and never care whoever is like them. It’s hard to explain but I really don’t know how to explain.

    Can Men and Women be friends? I’d say YES because in a relationship both should know what each other think and others stuff will not be important.

    Love this post – Ferb

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      May 26, 2013 at 5:05 pm

      Hi Ferb,

      I agree with you there – depends a lot on how people take their friendship and to what an extent they take it too as well :)

      Ah…so you seem to be going in a roller coaster ride it seems presently! Perhaps those girls, just like some guys, are out for having fun, and not really serious about the relationship. I guess it works best to keep away from such people.

      I wish they could be real friends and not get attracted to each other, as they things really don’t work. I guess if they cross their boundaries – there can never really be true friendship anymore and in most cases, one of the two do cross their limits and step beyond friendship and end it all.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views :)

  36. Sebastian Aiden Daniels

    May 26, 2013 at 2:01 am

    I think it is possible under the right circumstances, but it is very difficult because men often do have hidden motives. I think for it to be possible both sides have to be aware of their attraction. I have female friends who I am attracted to and who I know I won’t get with and I am okay with that. Once you address the feelings of attraction they tend to just sit there and don’t fester. Whereas if you push them away they come back stronger.

    I think it is important how much time you spend together. If a man spends a lot of time with a woman who is a friend, he is most likely going to develop feelings. It just happens that way.

    I really liked this article. Another thing about this men and women friendships is attraction. If the man is more attractive than the female than it is easier for him to be friends with her, but if a girl is more attractive than a guy than forget about it.

    I have many female friends from age 20-60.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      May 26, 2013 at 5:21 pm

      Hi Sebastian,

      I agree with you there, and I’m glad you mentioned about the hidden motives which really does happen in most of the cases :)

      You raised a good point, but is addressing the feeling and letting it sit there right- i t is curbing your desires I guess. Are you sure those feelings don’t show up and make you go a step further? But I get your point and perhaps this is what really works for those who are friends with each other without going beyond their level of friendship.

      Oh yes…if you spend too much time with each other, feelings are bound to develop and you really can’t hide, nor deny those.

      Even if the man is not more attractive, he can still be friends with a woman and vice-versa too, which again I think depends a lot on how they both take each other and what their purpose of getting together or being friends is. However, I understand what you meant to say here, though I wonder whether a man would fall for a women less attractive than him, or just might because of other reasons :)

      Nice to know about your friends, and yes – that’s quite an age range!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views :)

      BTW – Why don’t you grab yourself a Gravatar? It’d be nicer to see who I’m talking to through these comments :)

      • Sebastian Aiden Daniels

        May 27, 2013 at 1:00 pm

        I think it is true that it is about what their purpose of getting together and being friends is about. Yeah a man would fall for a woman less attractive than him for other reasons for sure.

        It is quite the age range, but I love people. What is a gravatar? How do I get one?

        • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

          Harleena Singh

          May 27, 2013 at 8:48 pm

          Nice to know that you love reaching out and connecting Sebastian, and the online world might just be the place for you.

          A Gravatar is is an image that follows you from site to site appearing beside your name when you do things like comment or post on a blog. In short your image would appear when you leave comments, just like all other people, and you can visit the link en.gravatar.com to learn more and register yourself there.

          Hope that helps :)

          • Sebastian Aiden Daniels

            May 28, 2013 at 2:27 am

            Okay I set up a gravatar. Let’s see if it works : D.

  37. JYBlind

    June 2, 2013 at 3:02 am

    I see this is an older post, but it’s so well done I have to comment. I don’t think it’s possible for men and women to just be friends on a broad scope because of dishonesty. I wrote about being “Friend Zoned”, and it talks about both men and women being aware of what’s going on around them and communicating clearly.
    I loved the backtracking some of the interviews did when they were questioned further. That leads me to wonder about the level of honesty we have with ourselves and the other person.
    I guess it going back to what you said Harleena, we need to be honest, keep a safe distance, and not cross boundaries.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      June 2, 2013 at 2:34 pm

      Welcome to the blog JY!

      Glad you liked the post and could relate so well to it. Yes, it’s an old post but I think this topic remains evergreen :)

      I agree with you there, though more than dishonesty it might be also because both, men and women aren’t able to communicate their true feelings to each others, which I doubt they can, unless they only remain till the friendship level – in both their cases. Honesty and keeping a safe distance is what they need to do if men and women want to be friends with each other.

      Thanks for stopping by :)

      • JYBlind

        June 2, 2013 at 10:31 pm

        You’re right. Using the word dishonest may not be fair to those of use who are less skilled in communicating feelings.

  38. Emma Blogs

    July 9, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    Nice topic Singh! Why not? why can’t men and women be friends? it’s just a pity that from the part of Africa I come from, being friends with a woman means only one thing, that you’re dating her! meanwhile you have no such intention, its just an innocent and platonic friendship with no strings attached. I guess it’s the method of upbringing that as kids we should shy away from the females, and now when we grew up, it was not easy to change that thinking mentality, if you know what i mean Singh? but on the long run, indeed, why can’t men and women be friends just for the sake of friendship?

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 10, 2013 at 12:21 am

      Hi Emma,

      Glad you liked this topic of discussion on why can’t men and women be friends :)

      Yes, most places and people misunderstand the friendship between a man and woman. However, if the friendship stays within limits, it’s all well and good, but the moment they cross the line of friendship – it really doesn’t stay the way it was initially.

      I agree with you, a lot depends on how you are brought up and the way you deal with the opposite gender. I guess if you keep it to the level of a simple friendship, it is possible, not otherwise. Do go through the interesting comments above where a few commenters have mentioned how they are carrying on their friendships with the other gender for years – so, a lot depends from person to person and their demarcation lines :)

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views. :)

  39. Anis Chity

    July 19, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    Hi Harleena this was an awesome post I really loved it
    I watched the video with a huge interest it was cool too :)

    I think men and women could be friends in fact I’ve many friends in school and online including you Harleena :D
    Why men and women can’t be friends ? They can! :)

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      July 20, 2013 at 11:34 am

      Hi Anis,

      Glad you liked the post and the video as well :)

      Yes, men and women can be friends, just like we are, provided they keep their friendship to a very simple level and don’t go beyond it. Often times, men start taking their women friends more than that, and that’s where the friendship really ends.

      Thanks for stopping by and for sharing this post too :)

  40. Rajat Gaur

    October 30, 2014 at 8:20 pm

    Men and women can certainly be friends. The real problem that you face in having a truely platonic relationship (of friendship) with someone of the opposite sex is that we usually don’t behave with our opposite sex friends the same way we do with friends of the same sex. This difference in our behavior pattern causes the real problem. This is even more of a problem in a conservative society like India. When a boy talks to a girl, he has this thing at the back of his mind that he is talking to a girl and therefore he needs talk in a certain way. Opposite sex friendship is not possible unless we treat our opposite sex friends the same way we treat our same sex friends.

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