Matt Forney
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On Male Friendships: Part One

friendship

This is a guest post by Adiaforon.

As a guy over 40, I’m entering into that time of life when I’m looking back over the things I’ve done, the things I’m doing now, and the things I have left to do. As a new member of the manosphere, I’m finding my bearings, figuring out what I want to contribute to the ‘sphere and the best way to do it. There are many topics that others have covered and others that have yet to be covered. I believe I have some somewhat unique experiences, so here goes.

I want to speak about friendship, particularly the presence of good male friendships that many of us in the ‘sphere lack, particularly after a certain age. No, I’m not really talking about 40. I can say that it starts around 25 or so, the time when most people are graduating college and starting their way in the world of work and relationships. Many of us have women friends, but those pale to male friendships. Why is this a challenge?

I begin with a link to this article. Take your time and read it carefully.

Finished? Good.  For those of you that want the summary, here goes.

The author, thankfully, is a man. We need a man to talk about this. A woman won’t have anything really constructive to say because a woman’s “friends” are more readily available, since women are biologically and culturally programmed to have more “friends” than men do.

Here are the main points in the article:

  1. When young, time is on our side. When we meet new people, many of them won’t have the same interests, the same political views, religious beliefs etc. as we do. That’s fine. More commonly, we find that, especially among the college-attenders, we’re all in the same boat regarding classes, things to do on a Saturday night, bar-hopping, chasing dick or pussy, attention-whoring etc. These common interests, coupled with time and lack of real responsibilities, forge quicker and more lasting friendships. In grade school and high school, there’s more of this happening. Those years are our formative years, when we’re bouncing different roles off of each other in an effort to “find ourselves” and decide the kind of young adults we want to be.
  2. With the advent of real responsibilites, (e.g., eschewing dating and throwing in the towel to settle down with some chick who will likely get fat and bitchy, kids) time compresses. We don’t have the time to spend to get to know someone new like we did when we were younger. So situational friendships, or what the author calls “friends for now,” emerge. The days of “best friends forever” (more female-centric, for sure) are over.
  3. Once you reach 30, a kind of internal psychological inventory takes place. Rather than being in exploratory mode, you start to concentrate more on the here and now. On the plus side, you know yourself better than you did just ten years prior and are better able to identify what makes you happy and fulfilled. On the minus side, this means that the funnel through which you filter new friends grows narrower. Quantity supplants quality. People who piss you off in one way or another will get dropped. Same with people who aren’t pulling their share of the weight in maintaining the friendship. Whether consciously or subconsciously, you’re drawing a clearer distinction between “friend” and “acquaintance.”
  4. There are three conditions that make it possible to make close friends: proximity, repeated and unplanned interactions, and an environment where you can let your guard down and express more of the real you. In our sped-up world, meeting all three conditions become harder and harder to attain.
  5. Getting into relationships inevitably complicates things. Though couples form new friendships more readily with other couples, there’s no guarantee that all four people will be jazzed with each other. (Concerning beta males, the new wife or girlfriend is likely to forbid him from seeing his old friends because she wants to exert control over the social dynamic. It’s played out again and again and again.) When the kids come along, it gets worse. The kids might become fast friends, but there’s no guarantee that the parents would.

In my own life, all of these points apply. The list of conditions in number four I arrived at myself some years ago. In order for me to make new friends that will (hopefully) be long-lasting, they have to fulfill the following conditions:

  1. Mutual interest in the other person.
  2. Overlap of interests and outlook on life,
  3. Proximity.
  4. Lack of competing alternatives and/or demands on one’s time.
  5. Consistency.
  6. Reciprocity.

For me, numbers five and six are the most important. These conditions can also apply to dating, and as a member of the manosphere who has been on his fair share of lackluster dates, few women are able to meet both of these. Forget common interests. Many American women don’t make the time and aren’t consistent.

In the next post, I’ll relate more about my own set of circumstances that led me to where I am in life with friends. I don’t have many male friends. This is partially by choice and partially by circumstance.

Adiaforon blogs here.

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