“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive. (1 Corinthians 10:23)
Is it okay for a girl to be best friends with a guy? I haven’t read any Scripture that tackles this question specifically, but I wanted to bring up the topic because most people seem to be on opposite ends of the spectrum in their response. Either it’s “Of course! My best friend is a guy, and I’m not interested in him at all!” or “No way! There’s too much temptation and usually one of you has secret feelings for the other.”
Personally, I’ve never had a guy BFF without there being some underlying attraction there. I mean, we clicked for a reason. Usually women create an emotional bond before anything romantic comes of it, and we generally need to feel safe, validated and valued if we’re going to let someone in on our secrets and spend hours upon hours together. As you open yourself up more, you can get drawn into a deeper level of intimacy that feels more like a convenient relationship without the full-blown responsibility.
When you’re younger, you may feel like life is too short to label things, but usually you can see things with a little more experience and wisdom under your belt as time goes on. As a married woman, I can look back on past friendships with males when I was single and remember putting a lot more energy into the ones that tiptoed on the line of attraction. I even justified that female friends came with too much drama and guys were much more chill. This led to my inner circle being void of female community and an unbalanced emotional deposit into a friend of the opposite sex. It’s important to point out that I’m not talking about having a guy friend here and there—I’m specifically mentioning a situation where you have a best friend who’s a guy.
I can’t tell you what you should or shouldn’t do, but I’m interested in opening up a thread of conversation surrounding this topic by bringing up a few main questions to consider.
1. Are you attracted to him? Let’s just be honest here—who doesn’t want to hang out with an attractive guy who wants to be around us all the time? You can justify those thoughts by saying that his cuteness has nothing to do with your friendship, but are you prepared for the potential of crushing hard on him without the feelings being mutual?
2. Have you ever crossed any physical boundaries? Some friendships actually begin after a romantic relationship. You may have decided that the two of you will never be boyfriend and girlfriend again, but the fact that the door has already been opened to physical touch, romance and flirting could create a confusing friendship. If you already know you’re both attracted to each other, it could be a better idea to keep the guy out of your BFF circle in order to guard your heart against a future heartbreak.
Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. (Proverbs 4:23)
3. How would you feel if he started dating someone? If he were to decide to date someone, your quality time with him would be cut short. It’s normal to feel some pangs of jealousy if your BFF has less attention to give you, but does the thought of him finding a girlfriend make you feel insecure or replaceable? If the closeness you have with him could make things awkward between you and his new girlfriend, that might mean that you two have bonded more than just platonic friends would and he holds a more intimate place in your heart.
4. Do you think he would be jealous if you got a new boyfriend? Let’s say you fall for a guy you met at work—would your BFF be supportive of you? Could you see yourself talking about your relationship with him without it being weird or hurting his feelings? Sometimes things are great and uncomplicated until you throw a new variable into the equation. If you notice him getting uncomfortable even at the mention of you thinking another guy is cute, this may be a sign that he’s into you more than he admits.
As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17)
5. Do you have any female friends? Like I mentioned earlier, I had a season where it felt like other girls welcomed too much drama into my life. I needed things to be simple and guys brought way fewer emotions to the table. By doing that, I missed out on the things girls could comfortably share with each other, and that, in turn, led to over-sharing and deepening the bonds I had with my guy friends had in an inappropriate way. It’s important that we have a healthy and balanced community around us, especially other women who are going to help us through different life phases and understand us in ways that a man never could. By cutting that off, you could leave yourself in a very vulnerable position with a guy who simply can’t see things from your perspective or meet your emotional needs in a platonic way.
6. Are either of you married? It’s interesting that we immediately see a difference when we bring marriage into the equation. Would it be appropriate for a married woman to have a best friend who is male? I believe most of you will say no and add, “Why would she need a very close guy friend if she already has a husband?” The reason why you might say this is because we usually understand virtue within the confines of marriage, but the lines get blurred when we’re single. As Christian daughters, we are to be set apart. If you believe that it’s okay for your best friend to be a guy, but you would change your stance when you’re married, ask yourself why. I believe it’s best to commit yourself to purity and virtue before your wedding day. Train yourself now in whatever season you’re in to have healthy boundaries with men, and to live out God’s standards in every circumstance. If you are married and have a very close male friend, it’s best to pray and ask God what to do about it and if there are any underlying issues that need to be resolved with your husband.
With any close friends we have, it’s also important to mention that they should share our values and beliefs as Christians. The people you surround yourself with should lift you up, pray for you and hold you accountable to the Truth as you go into the world and shine your light as a daughter of God.
We’d love to hear from you! Comment below on whether you think it’s okay for a girl to have a guy best friend, and why.