The Friendzone

There have been many articles far more eloquent than I could manage on the subject of Friendzoning, but I have to confess that I wish the Friendzone were a real place. I do. With all my heart. I wish there were a place where men would put me, “oh you’re just too adorable and sweet and I just don’t have any desire to touch your netherparts or put my willie anywhere near you!” I imagine it to be a fun happy place, like a bouncy castle, or a turn of the century amusement park, with all of the joyful (not-sexy) things you’d find in a good relationship, and none of the bad. Somewhere safe. Where I know that he honestly wants to be my friend and isn’t just pretending to out of cowardice.

A Friendzone is a safe zone, like in a childhood game of tag. Can’t get me here. I don’t have to worry if a comforting talk or a birthday cupcake or any other kindness is going in a secret ledger that means I owe someone sex. I won’t have a stroke because a friend suddenly kissed me on the mouth, “what on earth?”

It means more to me if someone wants to be my friend than if they want to date* me. It means they want to spend time with me for the sheer pleasure of my company. There’s no sex drive behind it, no urge to copulate, no animal need. It is about me, and not what my body can be used for.

It makes me sad when people say “Friendzone” with venom and spite. But… I’ve always wanted to go there! Is friendship really some worthless booby prize that they don’t care about and don’t want? What’s the world coming to?

So, for those of you who think the Friendzone is a bad place: it’s quite simple. If you don’t genuinely like a person, leave them alone. If you do, it shouldn’t matter whether they let you put your dick in them or not. And no, you don’t get to be frustrated because there is nothing you can do that makes a friend in any way obligated to have sex with you. Ever. The fact that you’re frustrated means you feel entitled to sex, and you aren’t — no matter how “nice” you were.

On a happier note, I’ll make you a deal: if I Friendzone you, you can Friendzone me right back, okay? We’ll mutually agree to be friends and enjoy each other platonically and live happily ever after.

* If you know what I mean [insert obligatory winky face here]

Angelina Jolie’s breasts

Angelina Jolie recently underwent a double mastectomy and blogged about it. While I have no objection to her personal medical choice, I also don’t think it makes her particularly strong, empowered, or brave. That most news commentators use these adjectives speaks to the superficiality of our society. After all, we don’t use these words to describe people who have other preventative surgeries: it’s not empowering to have your your wisdom teeth out or strong to have a non-cancerous lump removed.

Why does the media call her brave? Would anyone think twice about having arm flab or love handles removed if keeping them meant an 87% chance of getting terminal cancer? No, the cancer thing would be a bonus! Thousands are having these surgeries for no medical benefit whatsoever because it lines up with what is considered attractive in a woman. I contend that breasts, for a woman who is done having children, are just as unnecessary as extra fat. Except society doesn’t see it that way. There was an outpouring of support on Twitter¬†for “poor Brad” who will now be deprived of Angelina’s breasts. One man asserted that Brad will certainly cheat on her now. Here’s an example of their epic shallowness: even an 87% chance of getting cancer isn’t deemed a good enough reason to have breasts removed because hey, some guy still wants to touch them!

I respect her choice, and I’m taking back what I said earlier. She is brave, strong and empowered for going public and facing the ignorant backlash from people who only value her as a sex object. But she shouldn’t have to be courageous to opt for a life-saving* surgery. It shouldn’t have to result in a war of opinions against those who think they get to define what makes a woman. Her medically appropriate course should not have drawn any more fanfare than a decision to have a few pre-cancerous moles removed. It’s unfortunate that anyone feels they have the right judge a woman’s decisions about her own body. I hope that when others are faced with similar information they won’t have to be especially brave or strong. I hope they’ll take the course that’s best for them without considering what the world might think.

* Technically, it lowered her chance of getting breast cancer from 87% to 5% but did not save her from imminent death. However, it would have been awkward to say “probability-of-cancer-getting-lowering.”