Friendship: Different Types of Friendships
Friendship is “a person attached to another by feelings of affection or personal regards; as someone who gives assistance; patron or support to another person.” (dictionary.com) The word friendship has many different definitions. It has a different meaning for every person in the world. I watched three different movies and all of them show different types of friendships. There is the male-to-male friendship, which is portrayed in the Hangover. The female-to-female relationships like in Crossroads and then also the Male to Female relationship like in the movie Just Friends. Friendship is an important aspect of many people's lives you need a good friendship to have someone to lean on for support. “Who doesn't want to have more friends and influence more people? This can lead to a happier life, better jobs and an enriched life style.” (Peter Murphy). My main point is that friendships and different kinds are necessary for humanity to strive and be successful and happy individuals. The world is full of people that need one another. Friendships are one of the most important things to humanity to keep it together and moving forward.
The three main types of friendships are the male-to-male, female-to-female, and female to male. There are also many subcategories depending on what individuals are trying to get out of the friendships that they create. “To get a friend you have to be a friend, and this is communicated in words, and actions; sometimes merely a smile can convey that.” (Peter Murphy). When it comes to females and males becoming friends I believe that a platonic relationship is possible. The dictionary states that a platonic relationship is “a relationship that is purely spiritual; free from sensual desire, between two persons of the opposite sex.” “A platonic friendship brings together people of the opposite sex and joins them in the strong bond of friendship. A person does not have to be your boyfriend or girlfriend to be your companion. Opposite sex individuals can share laughs and tears and develop life long platonic friendships.” ("How to Keep a Friendship Platonic"). The article basically says you need to work hard so that you don't have the physical attraction to someone of the opposite sex. It is possible to make it work if you are willing to put in the work to keep it platonic. However, from personal experience I have noticed that you tend to get or think about what a non-platonic relationship with the opposite sex is like more that what a platonic one would be like. Most of the time you are able to get over those feelings but sometimes just being friends does not work. I can honestly say I have thought of what it would be like to date or have something more with almost all of my guy friends. Its not like I share these feelings it's just the thought. People meet people of the opposite sex and try to figure out what they have in common and try to find out just how compatible they maybe for one another.
In the movie Just Friend Chris Brander wants more from the high school friendship he has with his life long friend Jamie. He ends up finally growing the courage to tell her how he really feels. After he does this the rest of the high school figures out and they hound him for showing emotion. He gets upset and moves away putting those feelings in the back of his head and trying to forget. People tend to avoid problems they do what they have to do so that it doesn't become a big problem. When one person is willing to share the attraction and the other one is not the one that does tends to back peddle and rethink the action. In Just Friends Chris ends up moving away and when he finally comes back to town ten years later he is an attractive man and no longer shows feelings for the opposite sex. However, he ends up seeing Jamie and those feelings are rekindled. This makes me believe that attractiveness is a major component to male and female friendships. One of the major quotes in the movie is “friends don't kiss friends”. This quote makes me laugh because depending on which culture you are from kissing another person on the cheek or hand is common to show friendship or love to another. Even if the love that they are showing is just two friends loving one another it is still love.
When it comes to male-to-male friendships the first thing you notice is how someone has to be on top. I don't mean be on top like sexually but in the terms of being the leader or on the top of the totem pole. Men are also reserved and tend not to show intimate feelings. “Emotional restraint, homophobia, and low status for close male friendships all dominate masculine values in our culture.” (Blackwell, 2010) Basically if a man is close to another man these days' people get the wrong impression. Men can be friends but they need to be more of Bros then just sit down and be able to talk about emotions. Blackwell also says “While men express desire for close relationships with other men, they often avoid pursing them.” Men always need to be the man on top and that's just how it's been throughout history.
In the movie The Hangover all of the male situations are addressed in one way or another. Alan is not your typical man; he is not afraid to show emotions and doesn't really care what others think of him. When Alan does say things that are not typical things a man would say the Alpha Male who in the movie is clearly Phil bashes on him as quickly as he can. This movie also shows that men tend to stick together and help one another out in a time of need. Another key point to the male-male relationship is men being afraid to be judged for there actions. Men can't say men are attractive because they are then looked at as homosexuals. However, if a woman says another women is attractive then it is perfectly acceptable.
Another problem with men is that their dominance ends up playing a major role in friendships. Ends up Male friendships have evolved over time. Just like any situation things tend to develop and change over time. “In Ancient times, men viewed man friendships as the most fulfilling relationships a person could have. Friendships were seen as more noble than material love with a women because women were seen as inferior.” (Brett and Kate McKay). This article also talks about how male-to-male bonds is the strongest bond that two individuals can have. I believe this really isn't true. Women are able to have this same type of friendship.
Now I am on to my final type of friendship. The final one is the female-to-female relationship. I am a female and I still don't really understand the relationship myself on the intimate relationships that arise. Women are able to say other women are attractive and they are not seen as lesbians. Women tend to be able to get away with more when it comes to attraction. They can say what they feel and act upon it and do not get judged.
Girls also get away with the changing of friendships more. In Crossroads the three little girls in the movie say “lets be best friends forever.” In all honesty how often do girls end up staying best friends forever? People grow up and people change and go in different directions and people are all different so personalities clash. The girls end up going their different directions until they are seniors in High School and then they end up finding each other again when they really need one another. I believe the female gender also holds grudges for longer periods of time than males do. When women don't like each other then they are not afraid to be upfront about it. Some may call this being uptight or mean but in reality honesty is the best policy.
On the website howstuffworks.com they say that women cry more than men. “A possible explanation for this is the hormone prolactin which contributes to how much people cry. Prolactin is present in blood an tears, and it's more prevalent in women than in men.” (howstuffworks.com) So it is actually a proven fact that men cry less than women. Crossroads is full of real life emotion for women. They go through actual problems that everyday women encounter today. An example would be teen pregnancy for instance. Men and women just need to find a common ground and need to be able to express to one another more easily. I am not saying that no men are able to express emotions because I have enough of those types of guy friends as is. But I have a feeling friendship problems would become more easy if they could just find the common ground.
Women and men view relationships differently. There are many different components to each side. Men and women are able to be friends but sometimes emotions tend to get in the way. Women cry more than men do and are also able to show more emotions. Facts show that men and women do tend to have more of a problem just being friends. Friendships are one of the most important things for individuals. They help you get through problems and it's always nice to have a good ear to listen to. Friendships help you get places in life and the more people you know and befriend sometimes the better off you are going to be. Friends are there to lean on and to help you deal with problems. With out different types of friends and decent friendships what would the point of the world be?
§ "Ehow.com." How to Keep a Friendship Platonic. N.p., 2010. Web. 5 Apr 2010. <http://www.ehow.com/how_2095836_keep-friendship-platonic.html>.
§ McKay, D. (2006, February 22). Communication And Friendship. Retrieved April 12, 2010, from http://ezinearticles.com/?Communication- And- Friendship&id=150491
§ McKay, Brett, and Kate McKay. "The History and Nature of Man Friendships." The Art of Manliness. N.p., 08/24/2008. Web. 12 Apr 2010. <http://artofmanliness.com/2008/08/24/the-history-and-nature-of-man-friendships/>.
§ Migliaccio, T.. (2009). Men's Friendships: Performances of Masculinity. Journal of Men's Studies, 17(3), 226-241. Retrieved April 12, 2010, from Social Science Module. (Document ID: 1897246061).
§ Wilson, Tracy. "Www.howstuffworks.com." How Women Work. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Apr 2010. <http://people.howstuffworks.com/women1.htm>