So X popped a question a few days ago.

“Am I in the friend zone?”

For a moment, E wanted to reply “yes.”

But as E hesitated for a second, E figured he didn’t know where things were, or where the friend zone began.

Must things always be so clearly defined?


7 thoughts on “FRIEND ZONE

  1. I think that clear definitions take the fun out of things, but it seems to be something that respectable societal norms thrive on.

    I’m beginning to wonder if the lack of a need for clear definitions is a symptom of being commitment phobic.

    1. I like how you see it as “fun”. But indeed, it is the responsible thing to do I reckon. Assume – makes an ass of you and me. Haha.

      I have been thinking about that too lately (40daysofdating must be the culprit!). If I am a commitment phobe? And I think you have got a point there.If things are undefined, there’s always an plan B, an escape route. And there’s this fear of being tied down when things are set in stone. Incidentally, is being a commitment phobe characteristic of a jerk too?

      1. Ya la ask me to read that forty days thing!! Now I’m checking the website every few hours everyday rather obsessively and after I read a post I’m fueled with thoughts that are all over the place.

        Well, firstly I’m glad that there seems to be no female equivalent term for jerk. Hahaha I can’t be one.

        And I think that being commitment phobic will only make you a jerk if you lead the person on too far down the road, or get stone cold feet at too late a minute (something like leaving someone at the altar on wedding day).

        But I think being commitment phobic does not a bad person make. It’s just like people who can’t stand to be alone! Can’t live without someone else at their beck and call!

        The bottom line is, I think normal folks who succumb to societal norms like to make us different folks feel apologetic for being commitment phobic because it is like something is wrong with our abilities to form well-meaning relationships with fellow humans and somehow it means we are lesser than people who are not commitment phobic.

        I don’t know anymore. I get the feeling from reading forty days too that they seem to be losing themselves in the aims of the project the more they think about it.

      2. You’re welcome!

        You know, I often wonder if falling in love is really as magical and fairy tale like as people make it out to be. Do you really fall in love at first sight? Get swept off your feet? And fall hopelessly in love?

        Much as I like to think that does happen, I can’t help but feel like falling in love and going the distance is about taking risks; it is about compromise and being committed to him or her. It is about sacrificing and giving in. In other words, it is far too much work.

        Come to think about it, actually commitment phobe might not be the most apt term is it. I mean sure, there’s this fear of being tied down (and all the things mentioned above), but it really boils down to how we don’t mind being alone right, and don’t find the need to get together. In other words, it is not really our inability to form well meaning relationships with another person, but rather, we don’t need to do so, and in furtherance of that, we don’t want to.

        And all the flak we get from people who are in relationships only exacerbates this feeling of inferiority and deviancy which twists the truth of it all – they can’t understand how we can stand being alone and why we don’t find the need to be with another person.

        Am I just crapping now?

        And yea, I think both Jessie and Tim are losing themselves. It almost feels like they are trying too hard to make things work. Is it still love if you have to change yourself to make it work?

      3. So many sentences in your reply I’d like to highlight and mark as YES!!!

        “In other words, it’s far too much work.” – yes! I don’t know why people have to suffer for the relationships that are supposedly voluntary in nature. Having to stick with a crappy family, I get, because nobody gets to choose their family. But choosing to be stuck in a crappy relationship – if it’s not working, leave. See I think one of the biggest reasons why single people choose to be single is because they cannot stand the kind of nonsense people in relationships put themselves through – have to accompany this, report that, account for this, give up that, make oneself like this, make oneself give up that – this is how fun dies. Why continue when you don’t enjoy being together anymore?

        Why can’t people be cool with being friends friends and leave people alone without making them feel bad about the fact that they thrive on going solo?

        I’m beginning to wonder if all roots of this evil results from society. The social construct of a relationship builds expectations that people who love being on their own are unable to fulfill because it would counter their self-preservation instincts of reserving autonomy and personal freedom for themselves.

        Sure I feel a little sad that I’m not going to experience all the romantic comedies stuff but I’m even more exhilarated thinking about all the adventures I can venture forth with in my life without someone else’s obligations dragging me down.

        It is love if the change involves ridding vices in your life, like gambling, smoking, addictions. Because the other person gives you hope and you want to get together in a better life with the other person. But if two drunks want to escape sobriety together, hey that’s love too, just that it’s destructive love.

        But it is not love if the change involves changing aspects of your personality and making you feel inadequate and suffocated just because your life goals and your persona in life doesn’t reconcile with the other party’s wants.

        Okay, the former, without the cigarettes, you’ll breathe better. The latter, you’ll not be able to breathe, because the other person will be trying to shove incompatible commitments down your throat.

        Am I just crapping now?!

      4. I think you make a lot of sense those last two paragraphs. It’s basically suffocating, but in different ways.

        Although I suspect even if it is a little bad habit, that could be the 导火线 for arguments that go – why can’t you quit or stop doing this or that if you love me? And we all know gambling and drug addictions are fully capable of destroying families.

        But you’re probably right, the more lethal one is the latter. And if you are made to change how you are as a person, it’s probably not love love anymore, but love as a sacrifice and commitment, love which I struggle to call love.

        I think building on the idea of a social construct, it probably has to do with our Chinese upbringing too. 成家立业。现有家, 后有国。You can’t do anything until you’re married!! And all this stereotyping and marking us as deviants just goes to show how deep rooted our traditional Chinese values are.

        Not that it is bad I suppose. Just makes you wonder what else we have been conditioned to believe in, you know, which can prove to be a scary thought.

      5. I think there are a lot more people who are like us out there, but that because they chose to take the path more traveled, they integrate into being one of ‘them’. These are the people who end up choked full of bitterness and resentment, stuck in sad, angry marriages, and having to account for more damage that they have indirectly caused just because they follow what societal norms dictate. It was not what they wanted but society advised otherwise and they followed the advice and end up wrecked.

        I can’t think of any Chinese saying that proclaims nobility in not creating a family of your own. Sad to be Chinese. Though increasingly I’d like to think of myself as a citizen of the world, influenced by the influences that I choose to be influenced by.

        Love is a concept. Some people are perhaps just made to be unable to conceive it the other way most people do.

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