Ashley: The second time around, after he’d lived in Seattle, he just showed up on my doorstep and kissed me. Also, it really doesn’t say much for platonic friendship if you can only be friends with people you aren’t attracted to.
Kelly: The person I want to hang out with most is right next to me when I wake up.
We dated different people, made other friends, had our own adventures, grew up. That being said, yes, some people (read: men) can’t not try and sleep with their attractive female “friends,” I’m just not that guy.
Maggie: I believe in it to the extent that when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.
Ashley: We hooked up for a semester in college, then spent about two years being mostly just friends again while he did an internship in NY (I was still based in Indiana) then moved to Seattle.
After a year in Seattle he came back to Indiana to visit, and we decided to try and date for real. Ashley: We talked so much about every decision and all of our feelings so that even when it felt weird, it quickly went back to not feeling weird.
Ashley: We met in a seminar that was set up like a production company, and I was his boss. About a year later, after ending a terrible relationship and getting fired from my job, I went to a party at his house.
He asked if anybody wanted to go four-wheeling, and I said I did. Kelly: She didn’t really know it was supposed to be a date. Ashley: I’m bisexual, and if this were true, I wouldn’t have any friends. And I have been attracted to most of them at some point or another, just not in a way that I could or wanted to sustain. Kelly: I think that viewing relationships as an inevitable thing that happens between two people who are attracted to each other takes away from the emotional vulnerability, and work, that goes into building strong commitments.
Having personally experienced both the positives and the negatives of dating a friend, I’ll say this: there are few things more precious than a friendship that becomes more than a friendship, but there are also few things more painful than losing a romantic relationship and a friendship simultaneously. To commemorate the end of Friendship Month at Man Repeller, I interviewed five couples who braved the stakes and went from “friends” to “more than friends.” Below, their thoughts on what that leap was like.
Be prepared for it not to go your way and that being just friends with this person is probably a whole lot better than not knowing them anymore.
Ashley: Take your time with the feeling, and prepare yourself to be extremely vulnerable. Try to know if you can live with that, and if you can’t, be honest about it. He was always the standard against which I measured other men, and we dated a bit when we were younger. I was struck by this visceral sensation, like ‘This is The Point.
Kelly: Well, you spend as much time together as you possibly can, eventually you get irritated for pretty much no reason. One of our goals this year is to spend more time with other people because we need that to avoid some of those moments when we’re staring at each other and thinking, “OMG, GO AWAY!
Ashley: We sometimes get stuck in our little bubble, just seeing each other, just talking to each other, just hanging out together, and it’s fun for a really long time. ”Kelly: Talk to your friend, see how they feel, and go from there.