The Platonic Friendship: A Lost Art in Modern American Society
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The Platonic Friendship: A Lost Art in Modern American Society

Platonic friendships are a source of stability and freedom.

With the oversexing of Western society, customs like serial monogamy, divorce, and outright, blatant cheating have become the norm. Sexual activity outside of a marital, committed, or intimate relationship has become so frequent that it is considered the norm, and monogamous activity is rapidly becoming the eccentric exception. But, what happened to the platonic friendship?

The question of the platonic friendship cannot exclude male-male and female-female pairings, although since the United States is still overwhelmingly heterosexual, the issue usually deals with a female-male friendship. Do these types of platonic friendships exist? More important still: even if they exist, are they all eventually destined to become sexual in nature? The answer is certainly not, and the context of platonic friendships are a healthy part of a secure individual, and can also be quite beneficial to the sexual relationships of both parties of a platonic friendship (if they have them).

Sexual tension is a pressure, and it clouds interaction between members of the opposite sex or interaction between any two people that could consider themselves potential sexual partners. The beauty of a platonic friendship is that it removes the pressure of potential sexual relations, meaning that both friends are free to act without worry of sexual overtones in the friendship.

Ironically, one positive consequence of such a friendship is that it can leave the two friends free to talk about sex if they so desire. Since there is no sexual pressure, sex itself can be discussed openly without fear of altering a sex life that does not exist between the friends.

Ignoring sex altogether, platonic friendships are excellent maturation tools, because they encourage healthy adult relationships in a society that places way too much emphasis on sex. Assuming that the platonic friends' intimate partners agree, the friends can meet and enjoy each others' company as well as confide in each other without the intrusion of a physical relationship.

The reality of society is that society itself is healthier if its members keep their bodies from being intertwined apart from one committed relationship. Pregnancy rates go down, disease becomes less frequent, and society can function better this way. Realistically, for normal interaction to occur, all friendship relationships must be platonic (apart from one). Otherwise, society becomes a complicated multiple love triangle. Power to the platonic friendship!

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Comments (4)
Ranked #10 in Happiness

excellent I have had platonic relationships all my life they are very rewarding

Yes! Thanks for writing this. I have several platonic relationships and as an older woman (divorced) I am not interested in anything else. Too many people, both male and female, have a hard time believing that. A balanced world needs platonic relationships as badly any other kind.

Very good article. It does seem like people expect something more from relationships these days. There is a lot of joy and growth as a person from having platonic friends.

Well done on platonic relationship.