“Truly great friends are hard to find, difficult to leave, and impossible to forget.”- Randolf, G. The quote above explains to a great extent the value of friendship and particularly good friends in one’s life. Relationships are a significant aspect in everybody’s lives, if not the most significant, and friendship happens to be the most cherished of them all. Friends are people whom one can confide in, someone who are there in times of need. We tend to share a lot of things with our friends and consider them to be our closest associates. Nowadays, cross sex friendship or having friends from the opposite gender is a very common phenomenon. It can also be seen that both males and females are able to relate to each other well as friends. However, there are very rare cases of clear friendship between a male and a female. It can be seen in most cases that the closer a boy and a girl gets, it becomes more difficult for them to keep their feelings purely platonic without one/both experiencing deeper feelings for the other. Trust and understanding are the two most important factors that give birth to deeper feelings between two individuals and these two features are of vital importance to a friendship as well. Furthermore, the media always does have a say in our relationships nowadays. The media has been able to shape our perceptions regarding different aspects of life, from our allegiances in war to our allegiances in a Presidential Election than why not our preferences and perceptions regarding relationships? It is not necessary that the person(s) have to work on that attraction or express their feelings. The attraction which develops may fade overtime, remain or may be the precursor of a relationship. However the friendship may turn out, in most cases there is no such thing as a platonic relationship between a boy and a girl during the course of their friendship and such perceptions can be greatly influenced by the media. A very popular quote by an unknown author states: “Love is when two people know everything about each other and are still friends,” exemplifying both the complexities and the simplicities of friendship and attraction.
Cross sex friendship simply refers to having a friend of the opposite sex. Historically, cross sex friendships have been rare. Nowadays, as women are attending educational institutes more and as their presence in the workplace has increased, the segregated dynamic friendship has been altered and cross sex friendship began to increase. According to Karbo(2006) “The conventional wisdom is that we choose friends because of who they are. But it turns out that we actually love them because of the way they support who we are.” (p. 35) A Platonic relationship, as defined by Plato, would be classified as one with the absence of any form of attraction particularly applied to friends of the same sex. However in modern days such definition has been altered. Author of the book Platonic Relationships-Can they really work? Carmicheal (2004) believes that, “Though a little different from Plato’s original concept of love, in modern times the terms “platonic love” and “platonic relationship” have come to mean a relationship between individuals of the opposite sex marked by the absence of romance or sex.” (n.p) Carmicheal further goes onto explain, “The reason platonic friendships can be difficult is genetics. For a good portion of us, attraction to the opposite sex is genetically “hardwired” into our psyche. There’s no way to avoid it. We find the physical form of the opposite sex attractive, the opposite sex exudes pheromones that we find attractive, even something as simple of the timbre of the voice of a member of the opposite can trigger a romantic response in us.” When men and women look for a mate, they look for someone who is similar to them in intelligence, attractiveness, worldview, values, height and weight. The trouble is, friends look...
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