This gust post was written by Blake Blackwell. Blake has been a dear friend of mine for almost 8 years now. He has also been the iron that has sharpened my own, and his perspective and insights have blessed me. We both decided to take a topic and write our opinions on the subject without consulting the other. So to see my take on friendlationships, click here.
Let’s be honest: in the end, there will only be one. Or there better only be one. One what? One deep relationship with the opposite gender, that’s what. After my first close female friend got married, this lesson started to hit me. As female friend after female friend continued to get married, the truth became clearer and clearer. Then one day it dawned on me – the day I get married is the day this equation changes altogether. It’s one thing when my friends get married; I lose one at a time. But then, once I’m married, I lose all of them in one fell swoop.
But that time hasn’t come yet. And so I still have many close female friends. I cherish these friendships, much as I cherish my now married female friends. So what’s the problem?
You see, while these friendships are great I realize their time is limited. Unbeknownst to most of them, I continually struggle with how much to invest personally, emotionally, and spiritually.
I’ve decided that if both sides are platonic (meaning non-romantic), then be thankful for the friendship you have. Several of my friendships with females are completely platonic, and God blesses us both through our friendship. However, if there are signs that one side feels romantic, and the other does not, both of you have a responsibility to each other to protect each others’ hearts. Often this means breaking off the friendship, or limiting time spent together. Investing in another person is a harmful business if the affections will never be returned. Letting someone invest in you is equally dangerous, and even selfish, if you will never return the feelings.
These aren’t easy conclusions. Being single in your young adult years is a time of great joy, fun, but oft coupled with confusion, longing, and sometimes even loneliness. That is why our lives are filled with many friendships of both genders. Be careful though, guard your heart! A friendlationship is oh too finite!