“Other” Families

Family means different things to different people. For me, family is everything. I grew up in a traditional family of four in the small town of Clinton, New Jersey.  My dad worked and my mom stayed home until my brother and I were in school full-time. She then worked only during school hours, so I had the luxury of seeing my mom before I went to school and when I got home.  We went on one or two family vacations each year, (usually to Wildwood Crest) and spent a lot of quality time together playing all kinds of games – both board games and imaginary ones. It was an amazing time in my life.

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Just friends? Is that possible?

Last night, my husband and I had dinner with one of my best friends and his fiancée.  Robert (as I will call him) and I have been friends for over 15 years. We met in our late 20s and have been through many ups and downs with our careers, the dating scene, families, friendships, moving and everything in between. And we have never ever crossed the line of friendship. Ever. Not a kiss. Not a touch, nothing more than a hug. Honestly.

We met through a mutual friend whom neither of us speak to anymore.  And we have abided by her strange demand that the two of us “not date.” Although we hit if off mainly because of our sick senses of humor, it never occurred to either one of us to date each other. We were more like a brother and sister right from the start.  I know many people think that it is simply not possible for a man and a woman, especially when they are single, to not hook up, but take it from me, it is.  No matter how drunk or depressed we were, we never did. He is a FRIEND to me and I am a FRIEND to him and despite what the media and TV shows portray, real friends don’t hook up.

My husband also had a close female friend and when we first starting dating, I remember him asking me if I believed that a man and woman could be friends without it being sexual. I said yes and he told me about his friend, Krissy, and then I told him about Robert.   When I met Krissy (at her wedding), I will be honest, I felt a little intimidated and wondered if it was true that they really never hooked up. But then I thought of Robert and me and knew that is was true.  They really were just friends.

So, is it possible for a man and woman to be just friends? The answer is YES.  Even when one or both of the opposite friends get married, the friendship should continue and grow.  I am so happy that my husband and friend get along extremely well and enjoy hanging out together.  In addition, I love his fiancée’ and think the four of us are great together.  It was a great dinner and I am looking forward to getting together again with our friends.