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Monday, June 18, 2012

Can Men And Women Be Friends?

Audio for this story from Weekend Edition Sunday
 
Couple looking out of a window.
  iStockphoto.com
 
It's a question that kicks around endlessly without resolution: Can men and women really be just friends? On Weekend Edition Sunday, NPR's Rachel Martin talks to Faith Salie and Mario Correa, hosts of WNYC's RelationShow, about this very topic.

As it happens, Faith and Mario are friends, but they put that down in part to the fact that Faith is straight and Mario is gay – they describe some research that makes them think perhaps platonic friendship between straight men women is not, in fact, really possible. Some of the research indicates that men, in particular, are somewhat likely to both report some level of attraction to their female friends and to believe their female friends feel some level of attraction to them.

Now, I will make a confession: I have very little patience for this debate under normal circumstances, because my male friends include straight guys, gay guys, married guys, single guys, flirty guys, not-at-all-flirty guys, and yes, even the odd guy I've dated here and there. (Exes are a much more controversial question in my experience, and, I admit, a trickier proposition, but it absolutely happens.) But I am always willing to listen to research. If it turns out that I am not actually friends with any of them, that would be sad, because I would have to return a lot of dudes to the Friends 'R' Us store at once, and that would be very disruptive socially. On the other hand, they're worth quite a lot, so I'm sure I'd get good trade-in value.

For the full audio and transcript click here, Weekend Edition Sunday from NPR.

3 comments:

Jana said...

I think the appropriate answer to the question, “Can men and women be friends?” is: rare, but possible. In my experience, the answer is an emphatic,”No!” However, my husband has demonstrated an otherwise. Both now in their sixties, my husband and his female buddy have enjoyed a close friendship since they were both in grade school. To date, she has been married over 40 years and my husband and I 35. The dynamic is similar to a brother-sister relationship. She and her husband, and my husband and I, spend holidays and vacations together. Admittedly, this is the first and only time I’ve witnessed a true, long-lasting male/female friendship, and it proves to me that it is rare, but possible.
Jana Hum/114

Anonymous said...

Well, I believe that's what we were created to be. Whether your straight or gay you can still be friends with the opposite sex. If married your hep-meet or husband is your friend. Bree.. Week 4

Anonymous said...

Like Jana said, "its rare but possible". I also agree that there usually is a attraction between a male and female, but they still can be friends. It really depends on what type of relationship you have with your friend.
Brianna Dirden
HUM/114