Same Sex Friendships

(c) Thrive Photography, Design by Renee Fisher

I bet I wasn’t like you growing up.

I was taught not to become friends with boys. Boys had kudies and could get you pregnant just by looking at you. Gross.

I developed an unhealthy fear of boys at a very young age that stuck with me until college. Even then I was always cautious. To this day, I can still hear my parents yelling “10 inch rule! 10 inch rule!”

Don’t lead him on. So I didn’t.
Don’t let him get too close. So I didn’t.

But when it came to girls, no rules applied.

I could have late night phone conversations, sleep overs, and hang out pretty much wherever or whenever I wanted.

When I was upset. I’d call her.
When I needed encouragement. I’d call her.
When I just needed to talk. Her.

I could share everything with my girl friends. My BFF’s were always there for me no matter what. Because we were both the same sex I could trust them with my life. No secrets. My deep insecurities were laid bare. No more hiding.

And I could–at first.

Eventually one of us would pull away due to schoolwork, jobs, or another relationship. No big deal. We’d just pick up where we left off. Like when that big day came sooner for her than for me–I had to get rid of my jealousy. Or when she moved away I cried for days-but we made plans to see each other again soon.

Those weren’t the kind of friendships I was worried about.

It was the other “friends” who I thought were my best friends.

Friends who supposedly made me feel better about myself before they took it all back by their words and/or actions…I never thought I’d say this, but being friends with girls is a lot harder than I thought it would be.

I was taught growing up that you should, can, and will always trust your same sex friendships

Maybe I’m a bit naive.
Maybe I’m not.

Now that I’m married to my best friend (who is obviously not a girl), I’m finally seeing the error of my ways.

Proverbs 12:26 says, “A righteous man is cautious in friendship.”

What the proverb doesn’t say is that a man can or should only be cautious with opposite or same sex friendships–it’s both. Just because we both have the same body parts doesn’t mean I can–or should dump everything on her and think it’s okay. Or run in the opposite direction and assume all girls are catty.

Boundaries should be important with same sex friendships too.

All this time I was too busy guarding my heart with my male friends, while being reckless with my female friends.

When I told Marc what my blog was about this week he laughed.

He said something like, “Remember that time we were looking for a new church and you committed to get involved after just one Sunday?”

I laughed because it’s true. I feel like it took me getting married to open my eyes. I used my singleness as code word for busyness. Now that I’m married–I don’t want to over commit my time because I love spending time with my husband. Sometimes I feel like it’s cost me friendships with the same sex, as I wrote in Married With Friends, but as I’m learning now no matter who chooses to love or leave you is on her or him. It’s their loss.

The ultimate test of friendship–male or female–comes with time, which is why I believe it’s important to be cautious. Not bad cautious, but good cautious!

I didn’t want to leave you without some hope so I spent extra time with God in my devotions this morning and created this video just for you! I hope you enjoy.

For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. A time to be born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest.A time to kill and a time to heal. A time to tear down and a time to build up.A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a time to dance.A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones. A time to embrace and a time to turn away.A time to search and a time to quit searching. A time to keep and a time to throw away. A time to tear and a time to mend. A time to be quiet and a time to speak.A time to love and a time to hate. A time for war and a time for peace (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, NLT).

8 comments on “Same Sex Friendships”

  1. Emily Miller says:

    I love this: “Surround yourself with quality friends who are neither intimidated, jealous or apathetic toward your giftings.”

    You also said something in the end of your video that made me think of those “friend breakups.” My grade school best friend hit a rough spot in high school, and we didn’t talk for YEARS. I was a junior in college when she contacted me out of the blue and we reconciled. That was just in time for us to move to the same town after graduation, for me to be a bridesmaid in her wedding and she, in mine. In fact, we’re double-dating with our husbands tonight. I hope that’s an encouragement to anybody else who is missing his or her best friend right now. Know that God can restore that relationship.

    1. devotionaldiva says:

       That’s awesome Emily and VERY encouraging. Thank you!!

  2. Brooke says:

    Being friends with girls is tough.  I think comparison comes into play.  I was spending my journal time this morning (and time catching up on my Google Reader), and I came across your post.  I have been struggling/missing a good friend that was lost 1 year ago.  We just drifted apart.  And yet, this post made me realize that she intimidated me…I compared myself to her and thought I couldn’t measure up.  And how unhealthy it was for us to be in that particular cycle of our relationship.  We haven’t communicated really…our “breakup” was quite bad.  But, it is so true not to have someone who is intimidating…or who invites comparison into your life….or upon further reflection really isn’t into the things you are into.  Or has the values you have.  Thanks for writing this post Renee!  I always appreciate your writing & vlogs!  Hope you have a great day!  

    1. devotionaldiva says:

       So glad it helped you process some things in your own life. Praying for your broken relationship today!

  3. Holli McCormick says:

    How funny to see this blog post…I just wrote about Can Men & Women be friends….and in it say something about how women were just as responsible for causing me trauma as men but because they were women I gave them a pass.  Again, I go back to we HAVE to get past all exterior qualifiers that tend to make us stereotype (form of judgement) and look at individuals as INDIVIDUALS….and proceed with them as INDIVIDUALS!  Interesting how we are on the same wave length…http://www.practicejoy.info/2012/06/can-men-women-be-friends.html

    1. devotionaldiva says:

       Cool, Holli. Thanks for sharing. Exactly – individuals 🙂

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