Humour / Life / Love

The Friend Zone

I love you guys. Really, I do. That’s why today, I’m giving you a break from hearing the sound of my own virtual voice (be thankful you never have to hear my actual voice.  I sound like a 6-year-old on coke) and instead, I’m giving it over to the beautiful, funny and talented Miss Karen from The Chronicles.

She wrote a great guest post for me about dating, so check it out below! You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll emotionally eat ice cream….and at the end everyone will be richer from the  experience.  Promise. And make sure to head on over to her blog to read some more when you’re done. If this post wasn’t enough to convince you, well…sometimes she posts pictures of herself.  Yeah, that’s what I thought you said.

K I’ll stop being such a scene stealer now and just let you read it. Here goes!

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Hello everyone! So some of you may know me from The Chronicles of a Skinny Jeans wearing Toronto girl and the others may now me as Breezyk’s eternal stalker and not so secret admirer. I’ve known Breezy for a few months now and through numerous brunch dates, major girl crush and hopeless love only begins to scratch the surface.

When Breezyk asked me to write a post for her I got all anxious. Mainly because her blog is amazing (but you already knew that right?) and whatever I wrote would have to be nothing short of perfect. Well, that was an impossible task and after a month of struggling, this is all I came up with. And I’m honored that she wants to feature this J

The Scourge of the Friend Zone

You guys all know how much I like joshing around making fun of people, judging them through my judgmental eyes (in this case, fingers) and such. And so the inspiration for this post came from none other than my favorite josher, Barney Stinson: 

The proverbial friend zone. On one hand, at least you’re friends. On the other hand, Cupid has no more arrows in his nappy for you and friends is all you will ever be. Unless you’re a time-travelling caveman or an asexual plant, all of us at some point will have done our time in this miserable middle ground of hell. Hell as we all know is just another word for unrequited love…and bikini waxes.

Ever since man learnt to walk upright and speak in full sentences, the Friend Zone has basically been understood as a male populated island surrounded by Lake Testosterone.

But while I would absolutely LOVE to sit here forever and spend the next ten thousand words bitching about the stupid bitches that put them there, I’m here for a bigger purpose. Because whether you fellas realise this or not, there IS a female version of the friend zone. It exists and is no more a myth than gravity or the five second rule.

The female friend zone unbeknownst to many is more popularly known as “the mother zone” and in certain circles the “sister zone”. Mother and sister. Important roles in a woman’s life. None of which you want to be playing when you’re seeing a guy you want to knock socks with.

So because I’m a nice girl, I will offer myself as a prime example of how women get a one way ticket to the non erogenous zones of mother and sister.

Case Study #1: The Hug-a-bug

Dated this guy for a month and a half. Of the many red flags that were burning holes into my corneas, the biggest and brightest one was that we never kissed. Just hugged all the time. And how did I respond? I made him a bunch of cutesy birthday coupons promising the world (and more hugs).

The Aftermath: He broke up with me, the reason being that “he wasn’t ready to be in a relationship and that I was the sweetest girl ever”. Two weeks later he started dating a close friend of mine and now they’re married.

Moral of the Story: Most guys like to hug their “sweetest girl ever” sisters, not date them.

Ed note: Thank you Karen, for teaching me never to trust this man.

Case Study 2: The best friend.

I walked in to my first lecture of my Humanities class and took a seat next to the cutest boy my eyes could scan. Two weeks later we became inseparable. And obviously by the end of the semester I was hopelessly in love. I could completely be myself around him, argue with him, and even yell at him when he was being a dick.

The Aftermath: I did eventually tell him how I felt. He responded by telling me how he’d always be there for me and how I’m the kind of girl any man would be lucky to settle down with.

Moral of the Story: Maybe the only thing worse than being in the sister zone is being in the mother zone and sister zone at the same time.

Case Study 3: The worker.

Having learnt nothing from Case Study 1 and 2, I moved on to my next male encounter with The Worker. He worked the craziest hours in the world. Sometimes he’d leave at 4am and come home exhausted by 8pm. Sometimes he’d be so tired that he would fall asleep at the wheel. And despite all that, sometimes if I had a bad day, he would still drive all the way to my place just to give me a hug. He made me happy. And I made him elaborately packed lunches so he would save the time it took to pack a lunch to sleep in a few extra minutes.

The Aftermath: Things didn’t work out for the mere fact of it being shitty life circumstances. But he did say that not even his mother took care of him the way I did.

Moral of the Story: You’ll probably need therapy when you realize that perhaps the biggest reason the relationship even lasted as long as it did was because you took care of him like a mother.

Ed note: Listen to the woman and never pack that man a lunch. Especially not this one. Nothing says “mother zone” like a dinosaur shaped, crustless sandwich.

And what did I learn from this all? Nothing. In fact, I never really thought about this till at this very moment at 1:00 in the morning unable to sleep. Over the past three years that I’ve been single, I read all the latest fad books on dating…He’s just on that into you, It’s called a breakup because its broken, Why Men love bitches…you name it.

All of these told me to act the exact opposite of the way I did in my innocent unjaded past. And I listened to them and completely bought into that idea. I drank it all in. I scolded my girlfriends when they came to me with complicated boy problems, telling them to cut it off and be single, telling them not to be so weak (in not so many words). I loved the idea of flirting with guys but could never bring myself to think anything past that. Hence was born my debilitating condition of Dating ADD.

And it was not until this very moment after just going back and reading it again that I found out why I did those things. With each of these guys I became creative, I wasn’t afraid to be myself and most of all, I was happy.

There is a paradox about happiness that holds true for every aspect of life:

In order to be happy, you have to make someone happy.

In order to make someone happy, you have to be happy yourself.

And so from this 2am epiphany, here is what I’m going to try to take from it. Maybe you’ll laugh at me. Maybe you’ll call me naive or just maybe for some crazy reason you may even agree with me but the truth is.:

I didn’t make coupons because I was blissfully unaware of not being kissed. I did it because I wanted to in spite of it.

I didn’t argue and give my two cents on everything because I thought that’s a sure-fire way to a man’s heart. I did it because I was made to feel comfortable enough to do so.

And I certainly didn’t pack a lunch because that’s the motherly thing to do. I did it because I was happy. And when you’re happy, you become creative in finding ways of making someone else happy.

And I know that when I find someone who makes me happy, makes me want to get creative and isn’t scared off when I am myself, I’ll still be jaded. I’ll still panic and remember everything I read in dating books. But you know what? Of all the million things that could go wrong with trusting someone, I’d like to remember that something could go right.

So is this all too idealistic for this world? You bet it is. But I’m not asking you to adopt the same thought process. Perhaps one night when you can’t sleep, you may come up with a formula that works for you better. But maybe consider just one thing out of all this, when you do find someone who brings out a side of you that wants to be unjaded and innocent, throw away those dating books, make those coupons and pack those lunches and risk being in the friend zone. Because in the end, it’s not just him that deserves a fair shot. You do too.

And that`s my two cents on the friend zone. I`m not an award-winning author of a dating book or about to make millions on my late night findings. Just some uncool schlep who’s been stuck in the friend zone since 1986. And you what? For now, I`m okay with that.

Question of the Day: Have you ever found yourself in the Friend Zone?

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15 thoughts on “The Friend Zone

  1. I’ve been in the friends zone once. Just like Johnny Dangerously. You should never put me in the friends zone. A girl put me in the friends zone once……ONCE!

    I spent more than a couple of months chasing this woman, trying to get her see the awesomeness that was me. And she did. She thought I was so great she could tell me anything. Which begs the question; given the option, would you prefer a girl to be able to tell you anything or play dirty origami with your no no parts? My more sensitive side would like to claim the former, but it’s busy getting it’s ass kicked by my macho side that greatly values the latter.

    However, it brings up an interesting point that’s occurred throughout a lot of people’s relationships that I know: How do you get someone to commit. Sure, in this instance, it’s about getting someone to see you as more than a good ol pal, but even when you’re in the relationship zone, I would claim that all too often that same game is being played, it’s just been taken pro.

    Will he marry you? Well, he just isn’t ready for that yet. Will she try position X from the khama sutra? She just doesn’t feel comfortable enough yet. Perhaps he still makes lots of excuses not to go to your family for Christmas. Perhaps she just doesn’t want to move yet because 5 years is a bit too much of a rush.

    My point is that the friends zone is always in effect until both parties let go and just take the jump of faith somehow. But it’s been my experience that even with couples that have been married for 30 years, one of them is just not quite ready to do that just yet.

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  2. The friend zone is a terrible place! I dont have much experience on the female side of things but I have been there on the male side. Heres a quicky about my experience, I was a self proclaimed nice guy that was never assertive enough to push past the friend zone an get what I really wanted. The first time I read about this place in hell I freaked out an continued to study it. I next took a look at all my relationships an realized that I was in multiple friend zones! So what did I do? When she called or texted for my moral support I was MIA. I either deleted or blocked their posts on Facebook. I went to the extreme to avoid the friend zone, refusing to be friends with females to any extent. Now I pick an choose where I want to be. I also friend zone women as a way to get them interested in me without going the whole dating route. If the man friend zones first the women will fall for him.. After all they do want what they can’t seem to get.

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  3. Only like alllll the time,,,,,and sigh,,I’m a 42 yr old,divorced twice,woman,,,who is single once again 😉
    Great post btw,,and now excuse me while I go check out your Blog.

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  4. Glad to see Karen is back.

    Most people in the friend zone are lifers. I dated a girl who had a guy follow us around. He was clearly in love with her. I felt bad for the guy. There’s even an awesome picture on her Facebook of her walking with another guy on a bridge and him walking about 20 feet behind looking heartbroken. Really it’s pretty funny.

    I don’t really make friends with females (or anyone in general) so I’m never much in the friend zone. Only once but I can completely argue that her sending me naked pictures was a hint I understood way too late. Oh well. She said we’d be BFFs forever. We haven’t interacted since 2007.

    Maybe trying to be completely honest could work? I don’t know. I’ve always thought about going up to a girl and saying something like “I find you attractive but have no opening statement to make other than to stand near you and hope you compliment my clothing or the way I move my head to the music.” Being blunt works. It’s scary but it’s very black and white.

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  5. Friend-zoned? For sure. But sister/mother-zoned… I thought I was the only pathetic-little-excuse-for-an-adult-female who found myself in that predicament. Preach on, sister.

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  6. Pingback: The Friend Zone « The Chronicles of a Skinny Jeans-Wearing Toronto girl

  7. Definitely been friend zoned too many times to count. At least I am now dating someone who’s been my friend for years, but it was a long, hard road. Especially when they completely act like they’re interested in you because they want to be around you ALL the time, but don’t actually LIKE you. Ugh.

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  8. Always tell your daughters, “When they say the words ‘ I need some time’ or ‘ I need some space” Run away. It will never work. If you have tripped their ziz wheel, they would be doing everything to give you time and stay as close as possible and if your ziz wheel has been tripped you will want the same thing. I once had a really good friend that had been married for 15 years when her husband told her he only had ever thought of her as a sister. Sicko, he had been screwing his sister for 15 years??

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  9. Pingback: You just gotta keep livin’ man. L-I-V-I-N « The Camel Life

  10. I love, love this post! Being Miss University, the editor in chief of our school pub, and Ms. Nursing – you’d think I’m constantly on the dating scene. But no! being single is a choice of mine and as long as I’m happy, I’m perfectly fine with that. Besides, i believe in the saying “the longer you stay single, the longer you become a public temptation.” haha!

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  11. Pingback: The Girlfriend Zone | The Chronicles of a Skinny Jeans-Wearing Toronto girl

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