Why friendship with the opposite gender can get you emotionally involved

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

How attachment happens

Can friendship with the opposite gender backfire?
Before i can answer that question i have to talk a little bit about emotional attachment.

First of all, why do you think we get attached to people?
We get attached to people when we get used to their presence.

Do you drink Coffee?
If you do i am pretty sure you know how hard it is to go in the morning without your cup of coffee. Of course caffeine is addictive but one of the elements that fuel coffee addiction is being used to it.

When we get used to the presence of something or someone we might get attached to them. As we spend more time with certain people we might get attached to them then think that we like them. In my previous article Why do we like the ones we see often i explained how we find the people we see often more attractive because we start processing their faces differently.

In addition to that familiarity leads to attachment. The more you become familiar with a person the more comfortable you feel around them and the more likely you get attached to them.

Emotions arise when a person backs off

During a friendship with the opposite gender one of the people involved in the friendship might back off for any reason. In such a case withdrawal symptoms might happen. Those withdrawal symptoms are usually confused for love.

When a person finds that he has lost a good source of intimacy and nurturing he starts missing that source. As the person keeps trying to analyze those strange emotions he is experiencing he might mistakenly confuse them with love. See also can men and women be friends.

And because love is one of the most misunderstood topics by most people a person can end up concluding that he is in deep love with their friend. See why love is not like in the movies and Why getting butterflies doesn't mean that you are in love

In other words the friendship can turn into a relationship at any point.
You might think that it's totally OK to fall in love with a friend.
After all what's wrong with that?

Why falling in love with a friend might be big mistake

The problem with relationships that start that way is that they are usually based on false attachment and not real emotions. In most cases a person won't put the ones he really likes in the friend zone. But as a person gets emotional and as attachment gets confused with love a person can really believe that he loves someone while in fact he is just attached to that person.

So what could that lead to?
Wrong mate choice! when it comes to failure of relationships wrong mate choice is one of the most popular reasons. See why you always fall in love with the wrong person.

In short friendship with the opposite gender can ,in many cases, result in confusing the brain and making it believe that it's in love. Those false feelings might lead to a relationship that fails later on causing lots of misery and pain along the way.

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