Friends come in all lovable shades, shapes, and sizes, and it's only natural that feelings for one of your besties may develop into something more. When those feelings aren't reciprocated, we call that being "Friend zoned" — that awkward space where your heart secretly goes pitter-patter for a friend who just isn't attracted to you in that way. Normally, people try to avoid the friend zone at all costs because once someone finds their way there, it's difficult to get the other person to see the light as you crawl your way out to Relationship Land. But it shouldn't be feared as there are plenty of valuable benefits of having a good friend who isn't looking to take advantage of you at every turn. As much as finding your one true love may be a goal for those who are single are ready to mingle, let's look at the advantages there are to being set apart from the other temperamental, fluctuating relationships in your closest friend's life.
15 You Always Have a Partner In Crime
There's a saying that goes, A friend will help you move your couch, a best friend will help you move a body. Not that anyone is advocating the disposal of dead bodies, but when you're into mischief and need a partner, a friend zone buddy can be a perfect match. You don't have to worry about embarrassing yourself or looking silly because your buddy will be right next to you as you balance spoons on your nose, try eating live octopus for the first time, or sing Taylor Swift ballads at the top of your lungs while stuck in traffic. And when you need to spy on your ex while he's out on a date with that new girl, having a friend zone pal by your side will keep the laughs going and the tears from flowing. Your friend will always have your back and not hold your quirks against you because they're just as strange as you are.
14 There's Always A Shoulder To Cry On
He may pull your hair and tell you that you look funny to get under your skin, but when it comes to serious, emotional issues, he's right there for you. At the drop of a dime, your pal will make sure that all your girly needs are taken care of, especially after a breakup, even if he hates rom-coms and can't stand rocky road ice cream. He's always available to just sit and let you talk about whatever is on your mind without using that vulnerable information as a ploy to get into your pants. Having someone there who wants to connect with you on a deep level without having to worry about whether or not he's plotting to make a move makes anyone breathe easier. Friends like these should be cherished because even when you cry ugly tears and have irrational complaints about your job or dating life and he disagrees, he'll wait to tell you his opinion because he wants you to have a healthy place to vent.
13 You Don't Have To Worry About Awkward Affection
When you have a crush on someone and they're a close friend, the nerves, thoughts, and emotions can make things go from normal to uncomfortable when it comes to conversations or physical affection. One begins to overanalyze every time your hand may accidentally brush his or when he gives an innocent compliment. Being in the friend zone eliminates all of the uncertainty as to if there is an ulterior motive behind his actions. You'll never have to read between the lines when he puts his arm around you, and you don't have to be concerned with giving each other bear hugs because you love each other only as friends. One could argue the best hugs and cuddles come from your friend zone partners because the love between friends doesn't follow the same conditions as lovers. While there's an expectation for affection in romantic relationships, friend zone partners don't need to rely on physical affection to show their adoration for each other.
12 There's Opportunity To Meet New Guys
Expand your potential dating pool by letting your friend zone buddy hook you up with one of his hot friends. This is much safer than hitting the bar scene or trusting a complete stranger, seeing as your friend will have the inside scoop on guys in his circle. Of course you can't just take your friend's word for all truth; every woman has to do a little 007 digging of her own. This is to make sure any new man in her life isn't a serial killing, stalking pervert. But keep in mind that whenever a best guy friend wants you to date his buddy, it's usually because he knows the guy pretty well and knows that he isn't a weirdo. If you trust your friend, you'll end up dating guys that are more your speed and up to par with your expectations. Your screening process for the new, date-able hunk will be minimized and right off the bat, you'll already have something in common: a mutual friend.
11 You Can Be Emotionally Vulnerable
Unlike just having someone whose shoulder you can cry on, having a male friend who you can be emotionally vulnerable with has serious benefits. This is especially advantageous for those that find it difficult to open up to their romantic partners. Painful pasts or skeletons buried deep within our closets can keep us from forming long-lasting, intimate relationships, especially the romantic kind. An opportunity to share in a safe space with a safe person is the perfect way to practice how to de-stress when handling such conversations, especially with a person who makes your hands sweat every time they enter the room. Your friend zone partner will also teach you how to also manage the internal screaming that will occur if the object of your affection rejects you after pouring out your heart. Being emotionally vulnerable with someone doesn't mean that the other person will accept us as we are, so having a friend who will calmly guide you through that process is favorable.
10 Arguments Are Resolved More Easily
Arguments with a boyfriend/girlfriend can make or break a relationship no matter if the couple have been dating for a month, a year, or even a decade. Significant others know which darts to throw in order to pop your emotional security balloon, and sometimes their words are so painful, there's no repairing the relationship. The level of intimacy between couples makes the impact of hurtful words more dynamic and powerful than others because there's an understanding that both parties are supposed to protect each other from the pain of the outside world, not cause it. Why friends are more easily forgiven than lovers is a question that doesn't have a simple answer, but in many ways your friends may know more about you than your lover, so being friend zoned can mean that you're closer to that person and are more ready to forgive and be forgiven after a fight.
9 No Sitting Around Waiting
Waiting for that text. Waiting for that call. Waiting for that email. The wait game when you're interested in someone can be excruciating, making seconds seem like days and days seem like years. We've all been there when we send a good morning text or ask if our crush wants to get together for lunch and don't receive a response, only to assume the worst. Did you say something wrong? Did you come off as needy? Were you wrong in thinking he was flirting with you? Here's a tip: staring at your phone and repeating the words "ring dang it!" doesn't work, but being or having a friend who's friend zoned alleviates the pressure of if-or-when they'll respond to you reaching out. Sure, it's upsetting when a friend or lover ignores you, but the anticipation of waiting on a crush is much more ulcer-inducing than if a friend doesn't text you back.
8 You'll Get An Honest Perspective On The Male Mind
Oh, that mysterious abyss known as the mind of a man confuses even the most intelligent among us. Many times women bear the brunt of being blamed for saying one thing and meaning another, but one can argue that men are just as complicated, maybe even more. Having a platonic male friend to help tap into the what guys really want and how to approach dating situations is the best advice a woman can ask for. You'll get the honest truth from someone who wants the best for you without sugar-coating the negativity, not to mention words of wisdom on how men think and what they want. The truth won't be presented in a way that's intended to hurt your feelings, but to help you gain insight to your budding or dating relationship. So, maybe you'll learn that when you and your beau get together and he just sits there and plays video games, he sees it as bonding and you just thought he was an insensitive idiot.
7 Your Single Girlfriends Will Appreciate Him
Just as having a platonic guy friend will expand your social circle, your single girlfriends will appreciate having a guy around. Not only will you get the benefits of having a friend zone buddy, but so will your best female friends who are in need of advice as well. If you're willing to take the leap and allow one of them to date him, you'll be able to be the best matchmaker on the planet bringing two of your friends together. Yes, you may not see them as often if those sparks really do fly, but at least you'll be able to rest easy knowing that your besties aren't spending time with complete strangers. If things go well, maybe you'll be able to spend more time with the both of them at once instead of making plans with them separately. Don't worry about feeling like the third wheel sometimes, that's only natural.
6 You'll Learn What Qualities You Want In A Partner
Spending an absorbent amount of time with a guy who isn't shy to show all of himself because your relationship is platonic is a great way to see the qualities in a man that you are, and aren't, attracted to. If you were attracted to your guy friend at first, being or putting him in the friend zone will open your eyes to his true self, letting you see that he isn't the person you placed on a pedestal when you first met — nor is any man. It will allow you to take a good look at other men as well, and realize that what you see isn't always what you get, and just because someone has eyes that you melt into when you stare into them doesn't mean he's the Prince Charming that you make him out to be. Having that perspective will change the way you date in the future.
5 Experiencing New Adventures
Having a road trip buddy is a must in this day and age, and a friend zoned guy is typically more open to dropping everything for the weekend and camping on the beach or driving 200 miles to a metal music festival than many other friends in a social circle. That's not to say that your girl friends aren't as fun, but many guys are less high-maintenance and don't require much to have a good time. While you're suggesting that the two of you pound beers and headbang in the middle of the desert for two days, he's already packing up the car and waiting for you to jump in and ride shotgun. Platonic guy friends will encourage you to do things that you've always wanted to do with a companion, and they'll make sure that the both of you will make memories that don't include being bothered with whether or not he'll hold your hand at the end of the night.
4 Honesty Will Be The Best Policy
Because his goal isn't to feed you fluffy words in order to get and stay on your good side, a friend zoned sidekick will lay the truth out for you in ways that you may not be familiar with. Once a person is placed in the friend zone and it's understood that the nature of the relationship won't go to Romantic Island, the brick wall that most people, even friends, keep erected begins to crumble and brutal honesty is able to step over the rubble. That doesn't mean you're going to be pelted with truths that your heart isn't strong enough to handle. It does mean, however, that you'll be able to engage with someone who has your best interest at heart and will sit you down for an intervention if they think you're going off the deep end, and be your cheerleader if you're finding it difficult to believe in yourself.
3 Meeting Their Parents Is Something You Look Forward To, Not Dread
Meeting your friend's parents, whether those friends are male or female, the atmosphere is remarkably different than going home for the holidays with a significant other. Your platonic friend has already told his parents about you and laid down the law when it comes to it being an intimate relationship removed from anything romantic, so the pressures of impressing isn't as heavy. Yes, you still want to put your best foot forward and not be a jerk to your friend's family, but because the future between the two of you is to remain close without crossing any lines, the goal is to have fun, not make them want you to marry into their family. However, there will always be family members who see close friends as a pair that should just get together, but as long as those friends are solid and secure with their relationship, they don't have to worry.
2 Security — The Physical Kind
This sounds as if you're using your male friend as your personal bodyguard, but there's nothing wrong with having a protector when you go out on the town with friends. There's also a good chance that he enjoys having that position in your life because it shows that you trust him to look after you in a time of need. Even if you don't ask, most male friends are more than willing to make sure that you're safe from the creepy guy staring at you from across the bar or the other who is trying to grind up on you on the dance floor. He'll also be there to hold your hair back as you're praying to the porcelain gods after too many tequila shots, making sure that no one takes any incriminating photos that may end up on Instagram — except possibly him, of course. Can't have that happen...again.
1 There's Always The Possibility For More
You're thinking that we've spent this whole time going over why being friend zoned without the possibility of a relationship is a good thing, only to say that being open to a romantic connection is a benefit. The difference is not waiting for the friendship to evolve into something amorous, but earnestly focusing on growing as a individual and connecting with loved ones. Yet, there's still no guarantee that any friendship will stay within the platonic borders. The idea that it can grow into something more is exciting, especially if both parties enjoy the relationship as it is and don't chase for something more. The objective is to not stress about the future and to relish in not only the intimacy that friend zoning can give you, but how you can find out what you really want and expect from a relationship before entering into one.