Healthy: what an excellent word to cloak what I used to hold dear. Although I had never had a close guy-friend before I came to ORU, I never once considered close friendships with guys to be wrong. I strongly adhered to the notion of “strictly platonic friendships” and would vehemently defend my position at every challenge. After all, I genuinely felt nothing for my best friend and he had a girlfriend. What could be safer than that?
Then came the day when I discerned between physical and emotional promiscuity: I felt a twinge of jealousy for his girlfriend. I knew instantly that I had crossed some boundaries. The next day we were no longer friends.
There is nothing healthy about spending copious amounts of time with a person of the opposite gender with whom you have absolutely no intention of dating or marrying. I am not saying that girls and guys hanging out is in any way wrong. I would go so far as to encourage it. Nonetheless, consistently sharing your deepest thoughts, struggles and dreams is not OK. It is even worse when you’re constantly alone together. In fact, it’s quite promiscuous.
People just don’t think of it that way because they can’t physically see it.
Almost any person who has been in an affair will tell you, however, that it all began with an emotional need that was not being adequately fulfilled.
We all have emotional needs; it is how we choose to meet those needs that either entangles us or liberates us. Fortunately for us Christians, we have a God who not only can, but also desires to make us whole. He wants us to have a solid, immovable relationship with Him foremost. Then He wants us to have deep, fulfilling friendships with people of our own gender. After that, He wants to bless us with a profound, meaningful relationship with only one person.
That person shouldn’t have to constantly compete for your heart.
There are such things as heart-ties, and if you’re single and have any intention of entering into a relationship any time soon, I would strongly encourage you not to be having a bunch of “best friends” of the opposite gender.
Strictly platonic friendships are simply not possible in the long run. Eventually, one of you is going to get really hurt. If you are already in a relationship in particular, do not be spending an inordinate amount of time with a person of the opposite sex. Please take it from me: it’s not worth it.