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Gems > 25
by Jennifer Brown
before the days of “When Harry
Met Sally,” experts, scholars, and common folks
engaged in dialogue and debate over whether men and
women could be “just friends”.
And, in a
similar vein, many have questioned whether it is
ever really wise to cross the line, and go from
friend to lover.
This topic is particularly dear to my heart, in that
most of my friends are men.
And most of them are hunks!
my musician friend in California, my sexy side-kick
who’s on the board of directors of a not-for-profit
for kids, and a blue-collar beefcake who’s 7
years my junior.
I greatly value their role in my life, I’ve
pretty much always stuck to a “no fraternization
rule”. If we started out as friends, that’s
how we’d stay to the end. True Blue!
reason for this “policy” is that a
failed relationship might ruin a future friendship.
Once you cross the line, can you ever go back? I didn’t
want to take the risk.
But now, with more experience
and perspective under my belt, my position has been
friends become lovers? Well, it depends…on
the people and the circumstances involved.
I’ve come to the conclusion that a lover should
in fact be “a friend”. Ideally, your best
friend. That someone whom you can share your biggest
secrets and fears. Someone with whom there is ultimate
believe that it’s the basis and the
root of most quality, lasting relationships.
from friend to lover can be tricky: proceed with
Some time ago, I decided to make an exception to my
long held rule, and dated a guy who had been my dear
friend for many, many years.
What made me take the gamble? We had similar interests
and goals, mutual respect, a long history, and I
thought he was a really smart,
special guy. In some ways, I still do. (And did
I mention that he does serious justice to a pair of
the Plus Side…
We had incredible,
incredible chemistry. I still blush today at the thought
We never argued, and there was a comfortability that
only comes with knowing someone the way we did.
the Minus Side…
that you never “really” know
someone until you’re involved on a day to day
level. Much to my surprise, he could be uncompromising
and stubborn. And so could I. So, at times we were
at a stalemate, with neither of us truly winning. I
wanted what I felt I wasn’t getting. He wanted
me to require less of him.
the relationship ended, there was a period of months
that were particularly awkward. Like a “relationship
purgatory”, if you will.
We were now more than
friends, but less than lovers. Not to mention, in
years before, I had always been
able to rely upon him for moral support, cheerleading,
his lightness of spirit, and sound business advice.
Should I call? Would he want to hear from me? Should
I wait for him to call? Would the chemistry get
in the way? It was deep waters to navigate.
five months later, he did call. And we took up where
we left off. Nobody knows what the future holds,
but I expect we’ll
always (minimally) be friends, and that our lives will
be richer for it.
I ever break “my rule” and date
a friend again? With the right man and the right circumstances… with
Here's What You Should Consider Before Taking the
» Do you have compatible personalities and
lifestyles? For instance, if he/she "likes to party
like it's 1999"
and you're a homebody, it may not last.
you willing to compromise? All the chemistry in
the world won't work if the two of you are not
committed to working at the relationship and making
the other person happy.
he/she be trusted?
» Are your expectations realistic? Don't expect
to make any "make or break" decisions in 30 days
or less. Relationships have "learning curves" just
like jobs. Give it a little time.
» Are the two of you mature enough to handle
a breakup? In other words, if things don't pan out,
can you refrain from being bitter and putting the
other person's "dirty laundry" out in the
there more potential rewards than risks?
In business and in love remember to keep your head...
and follow your heart!
> Perfectmatch.com - The best approach to find the one.
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Gems is a weekly column written by award-winning
poet and writer, Jennifer
Brown Banks. It is published
every Wednesday. Click
here to read
her welcome letter.