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Platonic Relationships The Impossible Friend Essay

1825 words - 7 pages

In modern times the terms "platonic love" and "platonic relationship" have come to mean a relationship between individuals of the opposite sex marked by the absence of romance or sex. (Entertainmates, 2002) Platonic relationships are possible but I believe that there is a critical period in which people can no longer be "just friends."Physiologically and psychologically humans are hard wired for reproduction and pair bonding, and many factors contribute to attraction. My belief is that when these contributing factors form a certain amalgamation there is no turning back. The relationship that was once considered Platonic is now destined for destruction. Collapse of the Platonic relationship can happen in two distinct ways:- the two people can progress to a greater state of togetherness, such as a boyfriend/girlfriend relationship; or- The mutual need for a progression of the relationship will not be felt, thus leading to an awkward feeling together and ultimate collapse of the relationship.Note that the second form of ruination is by far the most common and most terrified by the male.It is important to understand that the reason Platonic relationships have a critical point of termination is because we are genetically predisposed and historically programmed to be more than friends."According to evolutionary psychologists, many of the traditional and universal qualities which we link to sex appeal are grounded not merely in assimilated social cultural traditions as we have been told, but are deeply rooted in our basic physiological make- up: our unconscious innate drives to do our fair share for survival of the species." (Jan Norman, 1998)These "unconscious innate drives" stem from pheromone driven and very primal hormonal impulses. Men emit a pheromone known as Androstenone, and women produce a different pheromone called Androstenol, which helps attract men. Special tissues in the nose known as the Vomeronasal Organ, or VNO, detect the chemical signals of pheromones. These signals travel to the brain, which triggers the subconscious feeling of sexual attraction. When attraction is so obviously written into our genetic makeup it is hard to refute the fact that Platonic relationships cannot exist beyond the critical period.The critical period is defined as the time in which two people can no longer sustain a purely Platonic, non-sexual, non-romantic relationship. The length of time leading up to this critical period is dependant on many different variable factors. The first of these factors is time, how long the relationship has been carried on for, for many people the longer the relationship has been going the harder it is to abstain from primal sexual urges, from this point on this will be referred to as the T factor. The second is proximity, the P factor, when two people are together for extended periods of time they develop a bond, this is inevitable but when people are close emotionally and physically then the critical period is coming nearer....

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