Tag Archives: friendship
I feel lied to.
I had heard, from sources I don’t remember, never to move in with people you consider friends. I don’t know how widespread this advice is, but it’s definitely a thing that I’d heard and was on my mind, right at the time that a friend asked to become my roommate, several years ago. And so it became the cause for hesitation and ambivalence.
Because what I’d heard was: don’t move in with your friends. You don’t want your friends as roommates. Just because you’re friends doesn’t mean you’ll live well together. You’ll end up annoying each other in petty roommate ways and it will destroy your friendship.
I didn’t want to destroy my friendship.
I was terrified of that happening.
So I dragged my feet and thought about declining what ended up being a really, really, really good deal.
Here’s my experience: moving in with my friend didn’t destroy my friendship. It made every night feel like a sleepover party.
As of the end of last month, I’ve done it again — moved in with another friend. I was worried about it this time, too.
I guess that advice has really stuck in my mind.
I even saw someone giving the same advice this week.
You know what I realized, though? Not once, ever, have I ever seen someone say, “Don’t move in with your romantic partner. It will destroy your relationship.”
What I see, sometimes, instead, is talk of “when” is the “right time,” the right stage, the right passage of time before it makes sense for two romantic partners to move in together. When. Not if. And certainly not “never.”
I’ve seen talk of moving in before getting married being potentially detrimental, but blanket generalizations of “never”? Never seen it.
It’s accepted to warn people of the dangers of moving in with friends — yet also believe those dangers dissipate in the case of romance.
I feel lied to.
I have a friend who, I discovered, likes petting my hair.
This is very good because I like it very much when people pet my hair.
The other day I was talking with a friend and someone else about this event that’ll be going on out in the desert this summer, and they let slip that a lot of people at that event like to walk around naked, since they’re “away from society’s rules” and whatever.
So I said I could never go to an event like that, then, because I really dislike seeing naked people.
And my friend looks at me and jokes, “You could just take off your glasses.”
Ah, yes. My own personal censorship program. Thanks.
I’ve recently seen some posts in defense of queerplatonic and alterous again (sorry, didn’t save the urls), and it’s made me think some more about different strategies people use in queerplatonic apologetics — that is, in making the case for why words like queerplatonic are worthwhile to have. I think of them as operating under two main modes.
(note that I dislike the choice of components for the word “queerplatonic” for various reasons, but that’s not the point of this post)
One of these modes, as I was saying, describes queerplatonic partnerships in terms of a romance without certain attributes associated with romance. For example, lacking romantic feeling, or not based on romantic sentiment, or some other absence of something romantic. In this mode, a qpp is not a friendship. It may be a semi-romance, or not a romance, but the key element of this mode is that the emphasis on “NOT friendship.”
The other mode describes queerplatonic partnerships in terms of a friendship with certain attributes not associated with friendship. For example, going on sensual dinner dates, sharing a bed, kissing, planning a day of celebration for the relationship, getting legally married, raising a child together, or the relationship otherwise being accorded more value, commitment, or importance than friendships are typically “allowed.” A relationship doesn’t have to involve marriage or the like to be qp, but that’s a frequently cited example to demonstrate the depth of divergence from friendship norms. To me, the concept of “queerplatonic” isn’t (or doesn’t need to be) bound to a specific relationship narrative or set of practices so much as a personal choice on behalf of the partnering individuals to demarcate their relationship as somehow distinct from their other friendships + from what they’ve been told a friendship should be.
The first mode stakes the relevance of “qpp” on the relationships it describes being “NOT friendship,” i.e. not “reducible” to “friends” or “best friends,” for which there are obviously preexisting terms. In doing so, it typically involves a metric in which qpps, being mutually exclusive with friendship, are also ranked as “more” than friendship, necessitating that an upper limit boundary be placed on the intimacy/importance/commitment of friendship.
The second mode, on the other hand, would suggest that such an upper limit boundary is bullbutter. If a qpp can be described — incompletely, but accurately — as friendship, then defining that exceptional friendship as queerplatonic proclaims a resistance to that arbitrary cap on what “friendship” can mean. It says — that cap is fake, and here’s your living proof. It says friendship is many-splendored and diverse, even in the face of relationship norms that would contest otherwise.
The first mode counters qpp-mockery by defining “friendship” as too inaccurate to contain qpps, which it accomplishes in turn by defining friendship as shallow.
The first mode counters qpp-mockery by highlighting a political/ideological difference between the labeling of “qp partners” and “best friends.”
A post brought to you by my impatience with what queerplatonic apologetics has become.
In lighter news, here’s another story about me and my friends.