Male Friendships Don’t Come Easily: Here’s Why

Friendship is important for anyone, no matter their age, status, or gender. People with meaningful relationships live longer, happier, and healthier lives. People do better with steady social networks, and that includes male friendships as well.
Women having best friends and meaningful connections is talked about all the time, but not so much with men. Deeper connections between men aren’t always represented in the media and usually aren’t encouraged, either. Stigma, masculine gender norms, and other issues impede men’s ability to have more than surface-level friendships.

What Makes Male Friendship Different

While it isn’t cut and dry, men and women tend to build relationships differently. Women are more likely to make friendships face-to-face, but men are far more likely to do it shoulder-to-shoulder. Women are predisposed to get together and talk face to face. Talking is the goal of getting together. Men, meet up to do something together, and talking is a byproduct of the activity. The activity is the main goal, and getting to know each other is the afterthought.
This different way of approaching friendship doesn’t have to hamper the process, though. Treat these get-togethers with intentionality. Take time to understand the other person’s expectations for the time you spend together.

Platonic Friendship Between Men

Many times, men don’t want to appear emotionally needy in their friendships. Historically, the culturally ingrained stigma behind this pattern was the fear of being perceived as gay. Today, there is a greater acceptance of being gay or having gay friends. So this is usually not the drive behind the reluctance. Consciously or not, men tend to believe that talking about personal or emotional things isn’t manly.
For men, affection is often expressed through teasing instead of directly through words or physical touch. It becomes a way of connecting without crossing emotional boundaries that people have unconsciously set for themselves. It is a way of not coming on too strong or emotionally attached.

Navigating Love and Friendship With Your Male Friends

Sometimes, it can seem impossible to have real friends. The fear of showing too much emotion and the struggle to balance friends with life’s responsibilities can seem overwhelming. Friendship is an essential part of being a functional human being. Here are a few ways to help you cultivate deeper male friendships.

Create A Routine

Life gets busy, and connection often gets left to the wayside. The things in life we don’t want to leave behind must be intentional, especially our friendships. Schedule a weekly, biweekly, or monthly time to get together. Build your friendships into your busy life.

Get Deeper

Sports and daily activities are great conversations, but not the only ones that should be had. Don’t forget to dive deeper into your conversations. Ask thoughtful questions that encourage other people to think a little deeper. Stay curious and engaged during your conversations.

Express Affection

It may be difficult or come across as too emotional, but affection is essential in relationships. Of course, this doesn’t mean that every conversation has to be an emotional one. With more practice, it becomes less uncomfortable. Love stretches far beyond just romance. People are allowed to love their friends deeply and express that through affection.

Include Your Friends In What You Do

Since life is crazy busy, it can seem impossible to fit in extra time to hang out with friends. Instead, invite them into what you are already doing. Do you plan to watch the game? Trying doing it with a friend. Do you go to the gym? Go with a friend. Finish projects together or just get together to have dinner. Invite them into the life you are already living.

Make Male Friends With Flok22

Flok22 is an app that uses technology to empower your in-person interactions. Cultivate more male friendships in real time. Download the app to meet people right where you are. See what other users are doing and arrange to meet with the people that interest you. Skip the fruitless virtual chatting and jump straight to in-person connection. Explore Flok22’s website to learn more and browse frequently asked questions about the app.