In our adult lives we are taught that if we haven’t already found our soul mates – this is the time in which to do so. We are not encouraged to seek out others just for the sheer sake of companionship; and I’m certain at Thanksgiving my Grandmother isn’t going to ask me if I have met my future “BFF” yet.
However after spending most of my twenties in and out of relationships, I’ve decided upon two things. One, if I do have a soul mate (that’s not a cat) they know that I’m lazy and not really into actively seeking them out so they’re going to seek me out, and two: I have decided that at this point in time I am so satisfied cultivating meaningful, long-term, platonic relationships – that I don’t even need an actual relationship.
If Facebook had more options than several fixed statuses (In a Relationship, It’s Complicated, Engaged, Single, etc) I would want my profile to say “Tanya is in a non-complicated relationship with everyone.”
Being in a relationship with your friends is the opposite of complex. They aren’t going to get mad if you don’t text them back quick enough, they don’t need to know what you’re doing every second of everyday, and you don’t have to worry about having or not having sex with them. Yes, I am currently in the market for relationships that only involve minimal hand holding, sexless intimacy, and staying up all night talking with not even the prospect of a goodnight kiss.
A great example of a platonic love exists between Portlandia stars Fred Armison and Carrie Brownstein. They met in 2003, immediately clicked, and embarked on what Brownstein refers to an “adult relationship with the energy of a middle-school friendship.” She has also said: “I feel like it might be one of the greatest love affairs I’ve ever had but it’s platonic.” When it comes to falling in love with your friends, gender issues need not apply.
Take my best guy friend for instance; we are mistaken for a couple nearly every time we are in the same space breathing together. We talk about everything, go on vacations together, have shared a bed more times than I can count – but we have never and will never ascend beyond anything platonic. There’s also the fact I’m gay; but that’s really a side note and throws of the whole point and the validity of this example. It’s an easy mistake when people see us as a couple because our friendship is comfortable and close in ways similar to a relationship. We do have intimacy, but it’s a different kind.
I think about the people I work with, my peers at school, and my other miscellaneous friends wherever they may be sprinkled throughout the states and I can’t help to be anything but thankful for each and every relationship I have formed how completely fulfilled I feel in every sense.
I encourage you to join the movement – fall in love with your friends. Take the $7.95 you’re paying OkCupid this month and go to Happy Hour. I mean, how is a website that calculates how much of an “enemy” in relation to you someone is credible anyways? Do you really think anyone has ever turned down a super-hot girl because there was 27% chance they would be antagonists? If you ended up being enemies does that mean you’d have to go into battle on the first date? I digress – but in any event:
I urge you to bring your BFF Jill to Thanksgiving at Grandma’s house and tell her to suck it and not expect a wedding anytime soon. Spend enough time with your best friend that everything thinks you’re harboring a secret lesbian affair. Put an ad in Craigslist in the “Strictly Platonic” section and cross your fingers and toes simultaneously someone who’s not a total creeper responds (slim chance.) This year, let’s let go of the idea that finding Mr. or Mrs. Right and instead fill our heart and your loins with friendship. Yes, I said loins.