Can Men and Women Just Be Friends?
Two Utah State University students asked fellow undergraduates to weigh in on an age old debate: Can men and women just be friends? While the verdict remains undetermined, the video does uncover that the answer to this question differs according to gender. Women overwhelmingly said that they had many male friends, while guys were less optimistic about female mates.
The three-minute video titled “Why Men and Women Can’t Be Friends” has reached more than 1,000,000 views. The two young filmmakers, Jesse Budd and Patrick Romero, ask pointed questions to unsuspecting students in various locations around the Utah State campus. The opinions of these young adults are probably what you would expect from college students. Their answers will undoubtedly leave you similarly questioning your own stance on the issue.
The two men wanted to prove that men and women couldn’t be just friends, and they were pretty successful in their quest. Even though many people answered that men and women could be friends, men tended to answer with less optimism. The men surveyed admitted that they have difficulty in maintaining a “just friends” status with girls that they find attractive.
The women students, on the other hand, readily answered that they have plenty of male companions. A few females even named their male friends to prove their case. But when Romero and Budd pushed further to find out if these relationships were strictly platonic, the females often revealed that the male in these relationships had romantic feelings.
There is a famous quote from the 1989 film When Harry Met Sally. Sally (Meg Ryan) is convinced that men and women can be friends. Harry (Billy Crystal) is convinced that they can’t be. “No man can be friends with a woman that he finds attractive. He always wants to have sex with her” Harry says.
The Utah State students seem to agree. But how reliable is a video that set out to prove the world-view of the two men that created and edited it? Men and women are undoubtedly wired differently (see The Female Brain and The Male Brain by Louann Brizendine), but there is proof of cross-gender friendships. Regardless of romantic or sexual feelings that may interfere with a truely platonic relationship, the two genders seem to be compatible outside of the sexual realm.
Then again, I am a girl.