Love comes in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes it’s intense, sometimes it’s more lowkey and subtle. Sometimes it comes in the form of the love you might feel for your significant other, the one where you just can’t seem to get enough of them. But, sometimes this love can be in the form of the subtle yet endearing love you have for your friends. Regardless of whether they are of the same sex or not.

With romantic love and parental love, there is platonic love as well. This term might seem fancy and extravagant but it is something that almost all of us experience in our lives at one time or another. The world relationship doesn’t necessarily mean two lovers. There are tons of different types of relationships in the world which is basically a word for a bond you have with other people. This bond doesn’t always have to be romantic and can be platonic as well.

Today, we will help you navigate the world of the platonic world. Look into platonic relationship rules, the opposite of a platonic relationship, and the difference between a platonic relationship vs romantic relationship.

What Is A Platonic Friendship?

The idea of platonic love was initiated from the times of the Greek philosopher Plato. During his time, Plato wrote about the various concepts behind love. His dialogue was focused on same-sex bonds which he described as platonic love. With time, this definition of platonic love and platonic relationships expanded and has changed a bit now. Now, platonic love aims at relationships and bonds of friendship you might have with people of different sex as well.

Platonic friendship is one where you have a bond with someone of either the same or opposite sex. This bond is devoid of any romantic feelings or element of lust. Meaning, the component of sex, lust, and dating is completely removed from a platonic relationship. This love is based on something bigger than lust or sex. It is about loving someone for who they are without expecting anything sexual from them in return. In a platonic friendship, you are not physically attracted to the other person or have any sort of romantic feelings for them.

In a majority of cases, this platonic friendship or relationship starts from having the same views, interests, or hobbies. A lot of times people tend to be wildly different from each other as well but that is more or less how it begins in usual cases. It’s just two people who enjoy each other’s company.

Platonic Relationship Rules

We know what platonic relationships are and we know how amazing it is to have someone to vibe with who is of the opposite sex. This gives you the window to explore how the other side thinks and broaden your horizon and experience in friendships. These relationships are most often extremely drama free and light.

The only problem is that all platonic relationships between two people can get messy if some basic ground rules are not set and followed. There is no hard and fast rule to make it strictly restricting with rules but setting some boundaries never hurts, right? Look at these platonic relationship rules given below to be safer than sorry.

No Flirting

Flirting is a big no-no when it comes to platonic relationships. Don’t even think about it. Not furniture, not to tease them, never. Fliting, even harmless flirting with no ulterior motives can ruin the relationship. It might not happen instantly but you will feel that things might start going downhill/. More than often, you will never know for sure if your friend has any feelings for you or not. Any sort of flirting from either end can result in two scenarios. One, one of you might get scared because of it and bolt thinking that you expect more of the relationship OR they might end up liking you when you were just flirting for fun.

Sexual Touch

Touch is one of the major elements that make up a romantic relationship. Touches and common physical contact is fine with your friend but any sort of physical contact that suggests something else can be suspicious and might ruin the friendship. Handshakes, high fives, and lowkey hugs are fine. But, it should be common knowledge that kissing, intimate hugging, and cuddling will also be a red zone for people who are in a platonic relationship.

Boundaries

Boundaries are always a great idea. It doesn’t matter what the dynamic of the relationship is. One needs boundaries in every relationship and bond of their life. Whether it is with a parent, a romantic partner, or platonic friends, boundaries are the safest way to keep things easy and drama free.

These boundaries can be very basic such as physical contacts that you are comfortable with, topics that you can talk about, times when you talk/call/text each other, and details that you can share about your private life, etc.

All these are very common things but it is important to keep each topic on the table and decide beforehand to avoid any uncomfortable situations.

No Date Like Situations

This should be pretty easy and is a no brainer. You do not want to be found in date-like situations with your platonic friends. Avoid going on one on one dates with a platonic friend, candlelit dinners, extravagant dinners, and late-night long drives are all the sort of things that people in a relationship are more used to doing. If you are approaching such scenarios you might give the wrong hint or breach a few boundaries here and there.

No Games

This is an important one. A lot of times when people are in a relationship and have romantic partners as well, they tend to use their friends and their bond to make their partners jealous. This not only sabotages your relationship with your partner but in the long run, it can also end up ruining things with your friend. If you don’t want to end up with anything in your lap you might want to avoid this. A romantic relationship is the complete opposite of a platonic relationship so don’t mix up the two and don’t try to use one to fix the other in an immoral way.

Don’t Keep Them Hidden

If it is a platonic relationship then the first off, your partners should be aware of the dynamic and bond you have with them. You have nothing to hide, right? So why not bring it out in the open. Introduce them to your partner and make sure that everyone is well acquainted with each other. Next up, you also introduce them to your family as a friend. Introduction to the family is a clear indication that you think of them as a close sibling or a best friend and nothing more.

Same Behaviour As With Everyone

This is a pretty basic one. Treat your friend the same as you would do with your guy group or your girl gang. There is no need to make him feel like there is anything out of the platonic circle in this equation. If you don’t dress up when your girlfriends are coming around then keep the same behavior for him. If he just plays video games when he’s with his friends then he should just do the same for you.

Be each other’s friends and enjoy what the platonic relationship has to offer.

Always Respect Each Other’s Partners

This should be basic courtesy but is important for the betterment and progress of a platonic relationship. First off, start by making sure that your friend knows you are in a relationship. Never keep your partner hidden from your friend or vice versa. Next up, don’t try to exert your presence on your friend when they are around their partner. Don’t do anything that might \give the partner a signal of you being more important, etc.

Being on good terms with your friend’s partner can go a long way when it comes to friendship, It shows to your friend that you are open to new people who make them happy.

Drunk Situations

While intoxicated, a lot of things happen which are out of our control. Do not land yourself in situations with your friend when you both end up losing control of your senses. We know a lot of things can go wrong and you won’t even know it. To avoid the next day of embarrassment and regret, try not to get too comfortable with each other while you are drunk, high, or intoxicated.

Acknowledge and Move

Lastly, it is normal in human nature if you end up developing feelings for your friend. The problem is that a lot of times these feelings won’t be reciprocated and you might end up getting hurt, rejected, or just lose the friendship altogether.

Acknowledge your feelings and give yourself the space to get out of them. Take some time away and try to rid yourself of them. Try to move on from the phase if you think your feelings aren’t reciprocated.

Platonic Relationship Vs Romantic Relationship

By taking a look at the list of the platonic relationship rules, you can get a look at how it is different from romantic relationships. In a platonic relationship, there should be no element of sexual experiences with one another while it is healthy to have that in a romantic relationship. Furthermore, going on dates and having more one on one sessions is fine with one and weird with the other.

There is no such rule that love is stronger in one and weaker in the other. Platonic relationships can also have great levels of love which is extremely healthy and important for the growth of both individuals. There should never be a competition between two as both are equally important for a person. Platonic relationships provide a different kind of comfort and kinship whereas romantic ones will give you security, warmth, and devotion.

Can Platonic Friends Fall In Love?

When men and women coexist it is completely natural for one or both of the people in a platonic relationship to develop feelings for each other and fall in love. It is important to be able to identify what it is that you are feeling for the other person. It might be that there are feelings from your side which are not reciprocated. Or, there can be times when you would mistake attention and devotion to love. Try to sit with yourself and gauge what it is that you are feeling for the other person.

Moving on, if it is love then that is not a bad thing either. You can communicate your feelings to your friend and see where the tide takes you. Once you do develop a relationship based on romantic feelings, your bond wouldn’t be platonic anymore though. A lot of times people have expressed feelings to their friends and found out that they felt the same way all along. Reciprocated feelings and long term understanding and compatibility can lead to a  beautiful relationship.

How To Get Out Of A Platonic Relationship?

IF you think you’ve fallen in love with your friend and the feelings aren’t reciprocated the things might get difficult for you. The best thing for you is to get out of the relationships but the question is how to get out of a platonic relationship? It isn’t as hard as you might think. Read on to get some pointers for how to get out of a platonic relationship.

  • Communicate your feelings to your friend and let them know how you feel., If they don’t feel the same way., they might want to put an end to the friendship to avoid awkwardness and to save you from the hurt.
  • Talk it out and see if they feel the same way for you. If they don’t then you can simply start dating them and safely be out of the platonic relationship.
  • Take some time to yourself. Taking a break from a person you have developed feelings for is an efficient way to clear your head and leave the platonic relationship smoothly.
  • Limit your contacts, such as phone calls, texts and meetups. If you meet them every week, lessen it to once a week. Gradually keep bringing this amount down to a point where it is not a compulsory part of your day and you can move on.
  • Busy yourself with other things. The less time and energy you invest in a bond, the less amount of attachment there will be. Busy yourself with other things and activities that don’t involve your friend. This way, you can smoothly get out of a platonic relationship without making too much of a big deal out of it.

Final Words

Platonic relationships can be beautiful and can help you grow as an individual spiritually and emotionally. Try to make the most out of these friendships without exploiting any boundaries. This way you can have the best of both the worlds. Treasure these friendships, and secure a good friend by your side for the rest of your life.

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Author

Nabeel Ahmad is the founder and editor-in-chief of Lone Mind. Apart from Lone Mind, he is a serial entrepreneur, and has founded multiple successful companies in different industries.

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