My men friends. I have a ton. I like them.
Like most people, I categorize my friends. Some do this consciously, but usually this is an unconscious decision.. aka it just happens. Don’t even try to tell me that you don’t do this.. cuz I know you do.
My men friends are categorized in several categories:
1. Brothers – These are generally my “turn to” guys for support when I need a good shoulder to cry on or help with something. These are also men friends who have seen me through some really rough times. I would do anything for these guys and they for me. If I could pick my family, these men would be first choice. Like brothers though, we’ve moved beyond sexuality and we don’t even go there.
2. Good Pals – These are generally men who are in the running for “brotherhood” but haven’t been quite been ruled out as sexual partners… or they’ve been ruled out but I’m not sure how far to trust them… aka I’m not sure how fair-weather they are. Often these are the guys that I’d like to date if they were interested in me like that. (or ones that I’d date if I was interested in them like that, though those are few as often they try to make things more and uncomfortable – these generally tend to stay as Acquaintances or Pals)
3. Pals – Men I like to hang with. Possibly considering dating, maybe.. maybe not. We’re not not friends.. but we’re not really good friends either. More than just an acquaintance. These either develop into a relationship or a Good pal… sometimes both.
4. Acquaintances – I barely know them, but they’re fun to hang with when I see them. I don’t usually invite them anywhere and we don’t really hang out, but we catch up on each others lives when we see each other.
5. Bad Pals – Guys that get into this box are generally there of their own choosing. They’ve either point blank said “We should just be friends” or something similar, and like to attempt to manipulate. They like to play games and get into your head. They want to be friends but still fuck you. These are likely to “fuck you over” and as such only get my time when I want to bat at something. Guys usually graduate from this category quickly either into Acquaintances or they’re gone, very few make it to Good Pals. There are a few that stay in this box for years, they only make it out of this box should they disappear or declare their love for me in a public arena so as to remove all ambiguity of their position.
I know some people have different rules for their male friends, and lots of people who don’t stay friends with their exes. I’m not really that way. If I’ve invested time and energy into getting to know you and we’ve shared some good times.. we like each other… Why in the hell toss out the friendship we built?
But there was something that brought us together. Something that kept us together. Concentrating on the good times, the times shared and focusing those into building something lasting.
There are 3 good reasons to toss out a friendship:
1. One of you cannot accept things as they are.
2. You find you really don’t like the person in the first place. (means you’re probably a sucky judge of character or you’re holding onto some major resentment.. see also rule #1)
3. You’re stuck in a rut of wishing for what is not. See #1.
Most of the time, this means just taking a time out.. a few weeks.. months.. whatever, until you or they have healed. Occasionally you’ll find that they or you just is not mature enough to move on as friends. It happens.
That said, most of my exes are friends. Some are actually brothers. Most are just good pals.. and some have fallen into the realms of Acquaintances as some friendships just do overtime. Some friends stay close and some fade away… and some like family, no matter how far you go you know they’ll always be there.
In the past, this has been a huge deal breaker with men that I date. They can’t get over that I’m hanging out with exes, or that I want them to hang out with my friends (some of which were exes)
I also used to have problems with men I dated still being friends with their ex-girlfriends.. and now I kinda like it. You can tell a lot about a man by meeting his ex.
By the mid-thirties, if a man isn’t at least friendly with one of his exes… I’m not sure I want to know him. He either makes horrid choices in women or has the heart of a stone.