I was with a friend of mine who asked this important question. “Linda, can you date your friend?”
The first response that popped into my head was “am I supposed to date my enemy” but I didn’t say that. I simply answered in the affirmative. She apparently wasn’t really convinced by my answer, so she asked again, “can you date your best friend?” I stared at her for a while, trying to understand why she was asking ME that question. Being the one who always has the weird answers, again I answered. I told her I could certainly date and marry my best friend if we loved each other enough to want to be together forever.
But my friend thinks this is wrong because according to her, her friend knows everything about her, all her flaws and scars, things she prefers remain packaged. I looked at her and it suddenly dawned on me, this is why many find it difficult keeping viable relationships. Many go from one relationship to the other looking for something they don’t want, or even understand. How confused/confusing can that be? How can we expect to pull off smooth relationships and make them last if we don’t date our friends? What is supposed to make relationships last if not friendship? Or is it sex? Which is better, a guy that should come courting and we act coy and mysterious, trying to smooth all the cracks until later when it leads to issues or another guy that despite knowing all your flaws, he still chooses you?
We live in a world where divorce rates continue to rise and we wonder why? The real question should be why not? Why won’t there be short lived relationships and divorce when we live in a world where we prefer pretense to reality? So what happens when you can no longer pretend? We start using words such as “he’s not the man I used to know”, “we are having irreconcilable differences”, “he has changed”, “she’s so different now”, and so on. If he’s not the man you used to know, what happened to the man you knew? What happened to the man you knew who truly loved you but you couldn’t date because you believed he’s just a friend and shouldn’t ask you out?
Some of us even get really angry when friends ask us out; we feel betrayed and stop talking to them. But after dating the new guy we’ve only known for a short time, we break up because we realize we’re not friends with them. We continue to look for that one thing we claim we don’t want.. Friendship! Really, how confused or confusing can we get?
We claim to have irreconcilable differences with our partners, but can we sincerely have irreconcilable differences with our friends? Yes we can, but they must’ve really done us wrong to get to that stage, much more than our partners probably would have done to cause the same level of discordance. Most relationships disintegrate because the chemistry has faded. Human beings love the excitement of new experiences and once we’ve been together for long, we may start looking for excitement elsewhere. Who says we can’t be creative with familiarity?
We go into relationships looking for that excitement and afterwards we leave looking for another one with its own form of excitement. We ask God to give us a husband that can be our friend, whereas there’s a friend somewhere, wishing for us to just look his way whom we have forever friend-zoned. Why do we run away from our friends and still look for friendships in our relationships?
Guys please don’t be shy. The worst you can get is a NO, but if she’s really what you want and you know she also loves you (though according to her “not in that way”) you should keep trying. Know when to draw the line if all fails though, don’t become a nuisance.
Ladies, give him hints that you like him, and if you’re already too emotionally involved that you don’t like seeing him date other girls and telling you about it, talk to him. God is so wonderful that He has made communication a good means of release for the heart just as our anus is for the stomach, so talk. Just for the records, I have done it, and I felt really free afterwards, really free! You might not achieve what you aim for, but you will find freedom. You owe yourself that much.
It’s about time the rate of divorce and broken relationships are reduced in our society. In as much as attraction is important for our pleasure, relationships are sustained by something more solid. I totally understand too that not all relationships with friends will work out as planned, or as we dream they would, but that’s the role friendship play in the mix. Friendship and maturity can help us return to what we used to have as friends before we became lovers. In the event of serious hurting, God and time heals the heart.
I’m not saying we should date all our friends of the opposite sex, I’m only saying they’re human beings to who should not be ruled out just because they’re our friends. To me, that should be a plus, not a negative.
I’d love to hear our constructive opinions on the issue; can you date your friend, if not, why?