How to build true friendship with people of opposite sex

Hello everyone,

I like to meet people and make new friends. However, i have noticed how tricky it is to be friends with girls. Many times, i noticed that when i try to be friendly, or look like i am building a long term friendship the way i would to a guy, a girl become suspicious of my intentions and things get awkward. I have come to realize that i should have some kind of protocol to apply to girls so things are clear from the beginning and along the way.

it is good to have friend and never to loose friends. Hower, how to build a good protocol of communication so that things between me and girls don’t get blurry and confusing.

The reason of course things get confusing is because I am single. Friendship between me and an other single girls seem to require some sort of introductory stage where we have to determine our principles in boy-girl friendship, whether i like her to marry her, or whether we are completely incompatible and no thought of dating should cross our mind… It seems that between two single persons of opposite sex, the devil will try to plant confusion as long as there are dark spots between their relations.

So my question is how to avoid those dark spot and build a friendship in the light, clarity and peace?

Thanks

This is difficult, because as you say, girls will not be sure of your intentions. Many single women are looking for a man for marriage. It kind of depends on your age – do you plan to marry?
The best way to make friends is not to focus on the friendship, but on a goal or activity you can do in a group or together. If you both are on a pro-life committee, for example, you will focus on building a culture of life in your church.
If you do become good friends with a woman, you will find that once she meets someone to marry, her fiance will be uncomfortable with your friendship. That’s why married couples usually have friends who are also married.
I think it’s easier to be friends with the opposite sex in a group: try a Bible study, a hiking group, a class in something that interests you.
Good luck.

I agree with this.

My husband has lots of female friends because he is a figure skater and in the U.S., females greatly outnumber males in this sport.

The adult figure skating group does things together all the time outside of the rink, but the main “glue” that makes them all friends is figure skating.

Same for me–I have male friends because I’m a pianist (outside of my day job), and lots of musicians are male.

I also agree with this. From my experience, friendships with the opposite sex occur under a legitimate umbrella of a common interest. So develop the common interest. In general the friendship will stay under that umbrella. If you play a sport, you will see each other when class meets etc. The common interest allows the friendship to grow in an arena where intentions are clear. Then both people, and their individual partners, know that one person is not “hitting” on the other.

Good luck.

Thank you everyone for underlining the importance of a common umbrella. i have noticed the importance of this, but your words gave it extra strength.

Agree with other posters. Especially, do things in groups of catholic young people, social events, service etc. It is such a better way to get to know people, see how they are with others, and it is way less awkward then just two hanging out aimlessly. A wise priest explained that men and women are made by God to fall for each other on some level when they spend a lot of time exclusively, even if they aren’t an ideal match. Basically as a woman I get frustrated with some guy friends who expect to hang out one on one even though I don’t want to date. Because some can’t respect that. So then we girls are always on guard even if it is someone completely nice, just bc there are guys who don’t respect the emotional limits; and that is why you are experiencing this. Therefore you should invite someone to go on a group project or event or trip. It is more natural to get to know people like this anyway; people can say anything about themselves on a dinner date but you should see how they act in life instead.

I listened to some Lighthouse media CD’s over the weekend on a road trip by Matthew Kelly (Best Way to Live, 7 Levels of Intimacy).

Kelly says that a “common purpose” is more important than a “common interest”.

Thus, the posters that suggested that meeting people in groups, especially when there is some sort of structure (church group, sport, club) etc. are probably correct.

A structured group can provide: a common purpose, more options of people to meet, a socially acceptable place to interact, and possibly a “resource person” to get advice from.

By “resource person” I don’t necessarily mean mentor / older person. Rather I mean a person who has both expertise and a high level of character such that he / she will tell you the truth even if it means losing your business / friendship. Such people are rare, and can be very valuable. I did not think much about that when I was younger. I do now, and some of the “resource people” I seek advice from are quite a bit younger than me.

Good luck.

Think of her as a sister.

It’s probably because I’m weird but I tend to view male friends as brothers rather than potential husbands. There have been one or two men whom I have viewed as husband material. Most men are in the brother category.

I consider myself unattractive anyway, so I know I have a snowflake’s chance in hell when it comes to attracting men.

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