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Romantic vs platonic love

Discussion in 'Family, Friends, and Relationships' started by BookDragon, Feb 5, 2019.

  1. BookDragon

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    Can anyone advise me on how to differentiate between romantic and platonic love? I'm not good with understanding emotional stuff, and I need to know how to make a distinction between wanting to be great friends and wanting more. Any thoughts?
     
  2. Lgbtqpride

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    The feelings is different.
     
  3. SomecallhimTim

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    Personally I don't differentiate. I'm somewhere on the aromantic spectrum and I also had a really hard time telling the difference between romantic and platonic feelings for years. I eventually realized that I couldn't tell the difference because for me there isn't one. I don't know if that's the kind of answer you're looking for but I hope it helps. Generally what people tell me is that romantic feelings are more intense and involve the desire to do romantic things (whatever than means for you) with the person and platonic feelings don't have that.
     
  4. Lgbtqpride

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    There can also be intense bromance like Sherlock and John.
     
  5. BookDragon

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    I'm autistic - I can't tell the difference, which is why I'm asking.
     
  6. Devil Dave

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    If you think of the friend as being like a brother or sister, then it's platonic.
     
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  7. grayman

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    I disagree a little bit here. I have a friend, who I posted about in another thread actually, that I think is attractive. She's a cute girl and I find her kind of attractive and would definitely have sex with her. However, I feel like my love for her is certainly platonic and not romantic. So, in that sense, I definitely don't see her as a "sister," but just as a friend.

    To OP, I don't know, it's hard to define for me, and I'm not autistic or anything. There's just this "spark" to romantic love where you're attracted to the person sexually and you also have a love for them and you're also infatuated with them. If I find myself longing for someone's company, wanting to see their smile or just touch them or be next to them all the time, that's romantic love.

    Still, I can see how the lines can become blurry if you're maybe just lonely and like being around your friend a lot. I don't think it's an easy thing to define for most people. In fact, I think most people are just sort of reacting to their feelings and urges without ever actually analyzing them.
     
  8. Lgbtqpride

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    If you want to have sex with her, it mean you don see her as your friend. Friendship should be innocent.
     
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  9. Devil Dave

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    You can still think of someone as being like a brother or sister even if they are hot. I have a straight friend who is very good looking, but I have no intentions towards him beyond just friendship. In truth, we share a lot of intimate conversations with each other. I've told him things about my sex life that I would never describe to my real brother, because I don't feel comfortable discussing stuff like that with actual members of my family. And these are certainly not the kind of conversations I would have in a romantic setting either. So I think of my platonic friends as members of a second family, where slightly different rules apply.
     
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  10. Broccoli

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    If you would defintely have sex with her then this is not platonic. Platonic is the way you feel about close friends of the gender you are not attracted to (if you are only attracted to one gender). You might not want to date her for other reasons so your relationship may be functionally platonic but it's not emotionally platonic.

    Agreed, in the same way as if you are a gay male or a straight female you can identify attractiveness in women.
     
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  11. Broccoli

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    @BookDragon try imagining yourself being physically intimate with them. If your instinctive response is 'urgh no, how weird' it's likely to be platonic. If it's curiosity, interest or arousal then romantic feelings are on the cards.
     
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  12. grayman

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    Okay, well I disagree. She is my friend and I would have sex with her if the moment was right. I'm not pursuing a relationship with her nor do I want to be in a relationship with her because I just don't feel that way about her. To me, sex and love can be mutually exclusive, and often are.

    I don't really appreciate people telling me what my relationship is with my friend, it's presumptuous and more than a little arrogant. If I'm using the term "platonic" wrong, then so be it, but trying to tell me that this girl is clearly more than a friend is simply wrong and I don't appreciate people attempting to define my friendship for me.

    So yea, I can agree to disagree. No big deal. To me, love and sex can be exclusive from one another and often are. I don't really see the big deal behind sex like a lot of people do I guess.
     
  13. Lgbtqpride

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    If you want to have sex with your male friend, then it is not friendship anymore.It is not consider a bromance.Friendship/bromance should be innocent.
     
  14. grayman

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    Incorrect. Friendships can, and sometimes do, include occasional sex.

    In Sex At Dawn, Christopher Ryan illustrates how bonobos of the same tribe all have sex with one another, save for parents having sex with their offspring because that would be incest, and that sex is used to solve all kinds of disputes and disagreements and even for pleasure. Friends have sex with friends, partners usually have open relationships, so on and so forth. Ryan postulates that early humans were more like bonobos than any other type of monkey, due to huge amounts of anthropological evidence. that actually fight against the standard monogamous narrative.

    Granted, you don't have to agree with Ryan's hypothesis, but the fact remains that plenty of people hold very casual attitudes toward sex and don't see sex and friendship as mutually exclusive. That you see sex in a different way doesn't mean that I have to; stop being arrogant.
     
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  15. Lgbtqpride

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    So you had sex with your male friend?
     
  16. Nickw

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    Well. I have several friends that I have sex with. One is just sex. We hardly even talk and it is because he has a partner who cannot have sex so we are just fulfilling each other's needs. One is a rock climbing partner and every year or so we get together and do a long weekend of rock climbing and there is sex and it is a result of close physical contact during an intense activity and we are both sexually attracted to each other. And, I have a friend who is a lot younger that I have a close friendship with where part of the friendship is expressed with intimacy. I am also married to a woman and have a different sort of romantic relationship and intimate relationship with her.

    Friendships and emotional connection can be expressed in lots of different ways including intimacy for some of us. Some of us need the deep emotional and romantic bond to really express intimacy and that is just how they are and that's cool. Neither is right or wrong. Just different.

    For the OP. Platonic attraction means there is no romantic or sexual desire. I have very dear male and female friends and I have no interest in having intimacy with them because expressions of that friendship do not include intimacy. Those are my Platonic friends.
     
  17. grayman

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    Nope, where did you get that idea from?
     
  18. Jax12

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    For me, where I draw the line between romantic and platonic love is how “close” I feel when I am with them.

    I’m quite affectionate and cuddly with my partner, or someone I have feelings for. I also tell my partner pretty much everything. I’m very transparent.

    I’m not very affectionate with a friend, but I show with actions that I care for them, like being a good listener, giving my best opinion, and doing my best to help them in anyway I can. Granted I already do this with a partner, but it’s an aspect that I try to show for any relationship, romantic or platonic.
     
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  19. Lgbtqpride

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    But you said friend should be allow to have sex with each other.
     
  20. grayman

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    They can. It's allowed.