This topic has come up a lot of late and I want to add my two pence. I believe a man and woman can be just friends. However there is always, always going to be a time when some one entertains the 'what if' thought? I sure have done. You know how it is. You and your man friend are conversing more often. The phone calls last longer. You feel more comfortable talking about certain things. The more you build up a rapor someones going to catch feelings. You can't pinpoint when it happens but your in this place of what do I do next?
I've been in this position and I kept schum each and every time. If I'd spoken up I'm not sure we'd have the platonic friendship we have now. Then again I may have gone on to form a good relationship, who knows? I was too scared to say anything at the time. Plus rejection can hurt like a mofo. Upon reflection I'm glad we never crossed over to the more than friends zone as I could have potentially lost a good friend. I'm a firm believer of if it's meant to be it will be
Some people don't dwell on the implications of crossing over to the more than friends zone. Whilst others over think it and don't say anything. There is no right or wrong answer. I do however feel that IF you develop a relationship and things go wrong you rarely get that friendship back the way it was. This too me is the main reason that stops people confessing their true feelings. Plus the fact feelings may not be mutual. It's not often that you continue a good friendship with your ex never mind a once good friend. Being civil and having the odd conversation is not the same as friendship. On the flip side if your such good friends then surely you can be honest with each other no?
Men and women can be friends they just need to get over the hurdle of the physical/sexual attraction. This hurdle will pass but just because certain thoughts/feelings are buried it doesn't mean they've gone. You just need to pay attention for those comments that have a slight undertone or the hand that lingers on your arm for too long. Ladies you know what I mean. Yes I'm indirectly saying it's harder for the brothers. Men will usually be drawn to you from a physical attribute, that's just how it is. I also think men find it harder to control their sexual urges.
Your emotional state will play a role. You may be feeling low and vulnerable and your male friend is saying all the right things to make you feel better. This should not be mistaken for he would make the perfect boyfriend or friend with benefits (messy territory). Patience is important as over time you may realise those thoughts were just a phase. Knowing the boundaries/expectations of your friendship is also vital. I know of females that get jealous when their male friends go out with their friends or start a new relationship. This is when you are no longer in the friend zone. You can pretend all you want but friends don't get jealous.
Of course there are a number of different factors that come into play. These will determine whether you can be platonic friends. Was there an instant attraction when you met? Was the friendship initiated by flirting? The environment in which you meet? I know the majority of people have platonic friendships at work. I could go on and on about this subject but I'd rather hear some of your views. Thoughts?